Saturday I decided to put the popular "wisdom of the crowds" concept to the test, and asked Gather readers to provide some of their favorite tips for making chili.Â Unfortunately I posed the question after returning from the store, so was limited by what was on hand (and the fact that I didn't start at 10 a.m. as some suggested!).Â That said, I incorporated as many of the suggestions as I could and the result was one of the tastiest chilis I've had!
I made it with ground turkey, and it really absorbed the many flavors nicely.Â Still got a bit of beefy flavor with a leftover T-bone.Â It wasn't super fiery, but had a bit of kick and a lot of complex flavors.Â Here's what I used:
2 tbsp oilÂ
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 jalapeno peppers, chopped, most of the seeds removed (a few left for a bit of extra kick!)
1 carrot, chopped
1 lb. ground turkey
2 cups canned tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato paste
2 cups red kidney beans, cooked (I started with dried)
T-bone from a steak with a bit of meat left on it
1 1/2 tbsp chili powder
1Â tsp each of cumin, coriander, and paprika
1/2 tspÂ oregano
generous pinch cinammon
juice from 1/2 limeÂ
1 shot tequila
about 1/2 cup beer
1 tsp bittersweet chocolate
for toppings: grated cheddar, chopped scallions, sour cream
Heat the olive oil and add the vegetables through carrot as they are chopped.Â Add the ground turkey and brown, aboutÂ 10 minutes.Â Add the tomatoes, paste, and beans, bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer. Add the T-bone and dried spices, cover and simmer for at least an hour.Â Add the lime, beer & tequila, simmer for at least 1 more hour.Â Add the chocolate toward the end (a great suggestion I never would have thought of!).Â Serve in a bowl with toppings.
Wine pairing:Â Yes, a bit unorthodox for chili, but I did match this with a South African shiraz (don't worry it wasn't too expensive).Â As long as a chili isn't super-hot, a shiraz or a zinfandel can work pretty well.Â But of course beer, water, soda or milk (according to several comments) can work too.