Invent-a-Chili

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 4-5 cloves garlic, minced (I love garlic.  Use less if you don’t…)
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 (12 oz.) bottle cream ale (It’s a light ale; use whatever you have around, or just use water if you’d rather…and I may have had a swallow before I added it to the pot…)
  • 1 (15 oz.) can fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (28 oz) can pinto beans, drained
  • 1 (7 oz.) can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, chopped (Again, I like heat, and can’t be bothered with half a jar of something.  Use 1-2 for the smokiness and a milder flavor.)
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons chili powder (use less if you prefer a milder chili)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste (I used about 1 teaspoon salt and about 1/2 teaspoon pepper)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a large soup pot, cook turkey until just crumbly over medium high heat.  Stir frequently
  2. Add onion, garlic, and bell pepper.  Cook for about 2 minutes, or until veggies are just beginning to soften, stirring occasionally–season the mix with salt and pepper.
  3. Add the beer (use it to scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan if needed.)
  4. Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, cumin and chili powder and give the whole pot a good stir to mix things up.
  5. Gently stir in the beans and chipotle peppers (I put the chipotles’ sauce in, too, because I love the stuff.  Taste a little on your finger before you make that call…)
  6. Bring chili to a boil then reduce heat and simmer (partially covered–just tip the lid at an angle so some steam can still get out.) for at least 30 minutes, stir it once or twice just to make sure things don’t get stuck to the bottom of the pot.  (The longer you let chili simmer, the better–I made it an hour before I couldn’t take it any more and had to try it…)
  7. Serve with you favorite chili fixin’s–oyster crackers (my personal favorite), rice, cheese, sour cream, etc.  This recipe also freezes well!
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