Day: September 16, 2009

Dating Chili

This Monday I participated in a chili cookoff at the churchhouse.  It was one of the most enjoyable activities we have had in a long time with everyone talking and enjoying good chili.  Each contestant was responsible for making a pot of chili and giving it a funny, creative name.  I made my own variation on the Barefoot Contessa Parties Chicken Chili recipe by Ina Garten and called it Dating Chili: It’s so good you will want to ask me out after eating it!  I would like to say that the title worked and I got a lot of dates from but sadly that was not the case.  (Plus, there were about 40 girls to 10 boys so the odds were not in my favor).

The competition was pretty fierce with around 10 pots of chili for the judges to try- including one pot made by a professional chef.   Mine was undoubtably the best and the biggest crowd pleaser; however, I just needed the judges to agree with that assesment.  Unfortunately they picked another :(    It’s like my sister said “ther’s no accounting for taste”.  Afterwards a couple of the girl judges came and said they liked mine the best.  Maybe chicken chili is more suited to a girl’s pallet.  Who knows.  Despite not winning, a number of people have asked for the recipe and I decided my blog is the perfect place for that.

Chicken Chili (Adapted from Barefoot Contessa Parties cookbook by Ina Garten)

  • 4 cups chopped yellow onions (3 onions)
  • 1/8 cup good olive oil, plus extra for chicken
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 2 red bell peppers, cored, seeded, and large-diced
  • 2 yellow bell peppers, cored, seeded, and large-diced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 red jalapeno seeds and stem removed
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more for chicken
  • 2 (28-ounce) cans diced tomatoes (preferably with mexican seasonings or fire roasted flavor)
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup minced cilantro plus some for garnish
  • 4 split chicken breasts, bone in, skin on
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (28-ounce) can cannelloni beans
  • 1 (28-0unce) can pinto beans
  • 2 tablespoons honey

Dice the onions, bell peppers, jalapeno and garlic. Cook the onions in the oil over medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the bell peppers, chili powder, cumin, jalapeno, honey and salt. Cook for 1 minute. Add diced tomatoes, beans, cilantro and basil.  Add chicken stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Rub the chicken breasts with olive oil and place them on a baking sheet. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast the chicken for 35 to 40 minutes, until just cooked. Let cool slightly. Separate the meat from the bones and skin and cut it into 3/4-inch chunks. Add to the chili and simmer, uncovered, for another 20 minutes. Serve with the toppings, or refrigerate and reheat gently before serving.

I think it is the yummiest recipe.  I love a big bowl with a little sour cream, cheese and cilantro on top.  Delicious!  Give it a try and let me know what you think.  It does make a large pot of chili so if you are making it for a family I would cut it in half (believe it or not this is already cut in half from the original Ina Garten recipe!).

By the way, I did win best name for my chili, so there is some hope for next time! My only regret is I didn’t take a picture of the delicious chili.  I always forget to take pictures of normal life events.  If you looked at my camera you’d think all I did was go on vacation!