Turkey & Bean Chili

Bean and Turkey Chili

The fall and winter means sweater weather. My favorite time of the year! This also means that it’s soup weather. It’s probably not cold enough as yet but I’m getting the party started with turkey and bean chili. I’ve made chili several times before but decided to try adding a bit of ground turkey this time around. Until recently I only tolerated turkey around Thanksgiving but I’ve found that making it in other forms is quite good. The meat is incredibly lean, can be cooked in a variety of ways, and tastes great if seasoned well. And on to the recipe!

1 lb ground turkey
1 tbsp browning (optional)
2 1/2 cups of dried beans soaked overnight
1 (28 oz) can of crushed tomatoes
4 tbsp chili powder
3 tbsp chili garlic sauce
1 tbsp paprika
1/2 tbsp cumin
black pepper to taste
salt to taste
sugar to taste

Heat olive oil over a medium fire in a 6 1/2 qt pot. Add the turkey and stir the meat taking care to break up clumps. Cook through until there aren’t any pink bits left. I don’t like the gray look of cooked turkey so I add a bit of browning to color the meat.

Add the beans to the pot and stir thoroughly to mix with the meat. Add the can of crushed tomatoes. Fill the can with water, swish about to loosen any left behind tomato and pour the water into the pot. Repeat. Cover the pot and continue cooking the chili over a low fire.

I use both chili powder and chili garlic sauce because I like a nice bit of heat without scorching my tongue. I find that tomatoes tend to be too acidic for me without sugar. As a result, I’ve grown to prefer tomato sauce to be somewhat sweet if there’s a lot of it in a dish. Start out with less spices than listed and add a bit more of this or that to suit your preferences. I’d recommend letting the sauce come to a simmer, tasting the sauce, and then add the spices. It gives you a better idea of what the finished dish will taste like and should help you avoid adding too much salt or spice.

Continue cooking until the beans are tender which will probably take about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

I like my chili with a square of warm cornbread but a crusty bread would probably be good as well. You could also garnish with a bit of sour cream and cheddar cheese if you’d like.

Approximately 6 servings



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