I always say that the summer is too hot for soups, stews and chili. But the last week or so has been relatively cool, and when you think of Mexican food in general — they don’t wait for the winter to have their spicy foods! Now, my attempts at chili are a far cry from true Mexican dishes, but it’s all done in the spirit, as I always say. But I’ve been having a lot of tomatoes lately, as well as ground beef. I wanted a change, but wanted something in the spirit of Mexican-styled food. Then I stumbled across an article about white chili: chili that’s made with a broth, thickened with beans and with chicken (usually) as the meat.
What a great idea!
Except, well, I don’t like beans. *gasp* Bad Foodie! Bad! I know. *groan* Sorry, gang. I just really have a texture issue with them. So, how was I going to make a chili that was thick enough to be chili without beans? Let me tell you how I built this thing…
First, I sweated some onions, celery and jalapeno together in a little bit of butter and oil. Since I’m a super-taster and have issues with anything that’s “too spicy”, I seeded and removed the ribs from this jalapeno, then removed the jalapeno from the saute before I added the meat. Instead of chicken, I used turkey breast meat filets.
These were diced into small, bite-sized pieces, then browned in the pot with the onions. Once these were fully cooked, I added a splash of mead (as I had no wine or brandy on hand), then I added two packages of washed, sliced mushrooms, the kernels of three fresh cobs of corn (just cut them off), freshly ground black pepper, some oregano, basil, minced garlic, cumin paste, red chili pepper paste, a few dashes of sage powder, half a packet of chili seasoning, a couple pinches of sea salt and then topped all of this off with five cups of chicken stock. Bringing this to a boil, I then added half a head of cauliflower, cut into small pieces, 1 cup of light cream, and lowered the heat to simmer for an hour. Near the end of that hour, I added another 1/4 cup of light cream, gave it all a stir, then a careful taste, fixing any last minute seasonings really quickly.
I served this with shredded cheese on top, green onion (chopped) and a small sprinkling of French’s fried onions, all with a small egg bun. I would have preferred corn muffins, but I didn’t have any of those, nor the ingredients for them.
Hubby had a nice big bowl of it and after our meal, I still have three rather generous portions (one would likely be two meals for me) doled out, potentially for freezing.
Due to the chili seasonings (yes, from a packet — sorry, I cheated) and the red chili pepper paste, the whole thing had a bit of a ruddy tinge to it, but at least it was not a typical, red, tomato-based chili with ground beef. It was a tasty alternative to the old standby. Definitely a hearty dish. The neat thing is that the cauliflower acted like the beans, but with a more pleasant texture, imo.