Friday, September 21, 2012

It's Chili Season! - White & Red

White Chicken Chili, Red Beef Chili, and Savory Corn Green Chili Muffins

     Amanda, the daughter of good friends of ours, recently got married.  It was a hectic summer so she opted for a shower after all the other festivities calmed down.  It seemed to be a great idea to include the guys by having a  couples shower with an autumn theme.  Amanda and her new husband Darren love chili, so I spent today digging out two of our family favorites - regular tomato ground beef chili and white chicken chili. They have a track record of satisfying a man-sized appetite.  Both of them call for the very same spices, but due to the difference in the major ingredients, they are strikingly at opposite ends on the chili spectrum! We like black beans in the red chili, but kidney beans are great as well.  I like to keep a large jar of the spices used in this recipe already mixed up.  I use this spice combination in almost any Tex Mex dish I make and my family never seems to get tired of it.  The basic proportions are: 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder.  To go with the chili, I baked up some savory corn muffins.  They feature mild green chilies, monterey jack cheese, and cumin.  The aroma of these flavors baking together is amazing! 

Red Beef Chili


1 1/2 pounds ground beef

1 onion diced

1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 (15 oz.) can tomato sauce

1 (15 oz.) can diced tomatoes

2 teapoons chili powder

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder



Brown the ground beef along with the diced onions over medium heat.  When the meat is evenly browned, drain off any grease.  Add everything else to the pot and let it simmer for about 15 minutes.  Top with diced onions, shredded cheddar cheese, oyster crackers, fritos, sour cream, fresh jalapeno slices, etc.


White Chicken Chili


1 onion, diced

2 celery stalks, diced

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 (15 oz.) cans chicken broth

1 (15 oz.) can butter beans, rinsed and drained

1 (15 oz.) can cannellini or great northern beans, rinsed and drained

3 to 4 chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces

2 teaspoon chili powder

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1 1/3 cup shredded monterey jack cheese

1/3 cup shredded pepper jack cheese

1/2 cup reduced fat sour cream


Saute the onions and celery in the olive oil until they are nice and soft.  Add the chicken broth, chicken, beans, spices and simmer for at least 15 minutes.  Take the chili off the heat and either serve it this way with the sour cream and cheeses as garnisher OR (what I do),  stir in the sour cream and cheeses and garnish the bowls with sliced green onions.

Savory Corn Green Chili Muffins


1 cup yellow corn meal

1 cup whole wheat flour

4 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 cup milk

1 cup shredded monterey jack cheese

1 cup corn, frozen or canned (drained)

1/2 cup reduced fat sour cream

1/4 cup canned diced green chilies (4 oz. can)

1/4 cup butter, melted

2 eggs, beaten


Mix the dry ingredients together, then add the wet ones in and stir until everything is blended together.  Use cupcake liners or a nonstick muffin pan. (I still "grease" my nonstick muffin pan with a little butter).  Spoon 1/4 cup of batter into each well in the pan.  Bake in a preheated 425 degree oven for 15 minutes.  They should spring back when you tap them and be browning on the top and sides.



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