Friday, March 25, 2011

In like a lion . . .out like a lion. Time for Chili.

I don't know what it's like in your part of the world, but in California we've seen quite a bit of the March lion and not much of the lamb. Soups and stews are still a staple in my kitchen; radishes, peas and spring lettuces still wistfully far away. But as Crosby, Stills and Nash say: If you can't be with the one you love, well then, love the one you're with." So folks, I'm here to say, give some love to your soup and stew recipes, imbue them with creativity, and create some good mojo. Tammie and I are here to help you with our two favorite chili recipes. Try them. Tell us what you think. Then post your own for us to try.

(I just want to endorse this recipe by saying that there's sometimes a batch in the fridge at work which Tammie so generously shares with our hungry staff. I like it with Red Rooster hot sauce!)
1 lb Ground Turkey
1 onion
2-3 Cloves Garlic
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 15oz Can Mexican Stewed Tomatoes
1 15oz Can Red Kidney Beans
3 Tbsp Each Spices
    Garlic Powder
    Chili Powder
    White Pepper
1 Tbsp  Ground Red Pepper-You can use less or more depending on desired heat
Salt & Black pepper to taste

Brown onions & garlic in olive oil.
Add ground Turkey and brown-add salt and black pepper while browning
Put stewed tomatoes in food processor and puree
Once ground turkey is browned, add stewed tomatoes and spices
Turn down heat and simmer for about 30 minutes
Add Kidney beans and heat through.


(this chili is more like a stew, has no beans, and can be eaten with tortillas, cilantro and chopped onion)
1 pork shoulder, bone in or out, doesn't matter
1 bag dried Ancho chilis (or Poblano, it's the same thing)
3 T toasted sesame seeds
One onion, sliced thickly.
5 cloves fresh garlic
optional-1 oz. unsweetened chocolate
1-2 quarts chicken broth
olive oil

1. Toast whole dried chilis lightly in a dry cast iron skillet. When lightly browned, soak in boiling water till soft.
2. Saute onion and garlic cloves together in olive oil till soft.
3. Put soaked chilis, onions, garlic, toasted sesame seeds, optional chocolate, spices and about a half cup of the chili-soaking water in a blender. Blend well. This is your sauce. Add salt, pepper, and lime juice to taste. The lime juice gives this sauce some acid and a little zing.
4. Take the pork shoulder, trim excess fat, and cut into big chunks. A 3x3 inch chunk is about right, but it really doesn't matter because it's all going to fall apart into a meltingly tender stew.
5. Brown the pork in olive oil till lightly crisp and brown on all sides.
6. Put browned meet into a crock pot or big dutch oven and cover with the chili sauce. Pour over enough chicken broth to cover the all the pieces of meat. Bring to a slight bubble, then simmer on low for 3-4 hours.The mean will fall apart when a fork is inserted. Serve with tortillas, cilantro, sour cream and onions. I also like shredded cabbage with mine.