Thursday, October 20, 2011

Spicy Smoked Chicken and White Bean Chili



I'm trying hard to use up all the meat and chicken stashed in my freezers and decided it was time for the package of smoked chicken to go last night.  I could have used up the andouille from the freezer as well if I made a pot of gumbo, but I'm trying to eat a little healthier than that this week so opted for this Spicy Smoked Chicken and White Bean Chili instead.  It doesn't have much in the way of vegetables, but the beans (and lack of pork!) up the good-for-you factor.

The chili goes together quickly with just a little chopping, and doesn't need much time to simmer so works well for a delicious and homey mid-week dinner.  I think the amount of spice in the chili is perfect --it has a nice lingering back burn rather than an immediate fieriness. The heat in the chili comes from four different sources: jalapeno, chili powder, black pepper and my favorite Cholula hot sauce.  If you want to tone the  down the spiciness a bit, cut back on the jalapeno and black pepper.

Spicy Smoked Chicken and White Bean Chili

Ingredients:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons minced jalapeno
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 4 ounce can chopped green chilies
  • 1 teaspoon Cholula hot sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 15-16 ounce cans Great Northern or Cannelli beans
  • 2 cups chopped or shredded smoked chicken
  • 1 cup light cream (fat-free half & half would work)
  • 1/2 cup grated Monterey jack cheese
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
Garnish ideas:
  • toasted pumpkin seeds
  • sliced avocado
  • grated Monterey jack cheese
Directions:
  1. Place a dutch oven over medium heat and add the oil.  When it is warm, add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes until they begin to soften.  Add the garlic and jalapeno to the pot and continue to cook for another 2-3 minutes.
  2. Push the onion mixture to the side and add the cumin, chili powder and coriander to the space cleared.  Cook for about 30 seconds, then stir the spices into the onions.
  3. Sprinkle the onions with the flour, stir to into the onion mixture and cook for about a minute. Then slowly pour in the broth, stirring constantly to combine.
  4. Add the green chilies, Cholula, salt, pepper and beans to the broth.  
  5. Bring to a simmer, turn down the heat and add the beans and chicken.
  6. Simmer the chili for about 15 minutes, then add the cream, cheese and cilantro.
  7. Simmer for about 5 more minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cheese has melted.
  8. Ladle the soup into bowls. Garnish with pumpkin seeds, avocado or cheese.
Yield: 6-8 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes

I garnished my chili with pumpkin seeds to add a little texture, and served corn and green onion cornbread muffins on the side.

This post is linked to the Healthy Home Economist's Monday Mania.

2 comments:

Elizabeth said...

I think you're missing the word "chicken" in the list of ingredients. Do you smoke the chicken, or do you buy it smoked? It sounds like a great thing to have in the freezer

Lynn said...

Thanks for catching that! I remembered writing "chopped or shredded" -- I must have been interrupted. We buy chickens when they are on sale and smoke a bunch at a time, then debone and freeze the meat. Its very handy to have for gumbo, jambalaya, brunswick stew, etc.