If words of affirmation are your love language, and you have a chili fan in your life, this chili will make both of your days.
I’m not a huge chili fan, but I’m married to one, so from time to time I throw together the basics – beans, meat, tomatoes, spices, etc. – and he happily eats chili for lunch for a few days. I thought I would do the same last week, but level up a little by actually following a recipe.
WELL. Not only was it good, but Carl actually declared it the best chili he has ever eaten. He’s eaten a lot more chili than me, so I was pleased – and had to agree, it was the best chili I’d ever eaten too, due in part I’m sure to its complete lack of kidney beans, but even more so because of the layers and depth of flavour we managed to get out of plain ol’ ground turkey.
The next day, eating some leftovers, Carl found me to inform me that this wasn’t just the best chili he’d ever eaten, but quite possibly the best thing he’d ever eaten, period.
Considering I just made perfect fall-off-the-bone ribs for his birthday a couple weeks ago, I was skeptical. But he insisted – this was it.
So, obviously I sent the recipe to various friends and family insisting that they make it and report back, and the results of this scientific testing were unanimous – it is a delicious chili. (Even if my mom did add a red pepper against my explicit instructions ;)) So it didn’t matter how long it had been since I last blogged, or my personal feelings about whether chili can legitimately qualify for “best-food-ever” status, I knew this was too good not to share.
The bacon, sundried tomatoes, and smoked paprika are a magical combination here, and cooking the meat in the spices before adding the liquid helps to get the fullest flavour out of them. Like most chilis, it is even better the second day. Also like most chilis, it is best topped generously with cheese, corn chips, avocado, and sour cream. Enjoy, before comfort food season gives way to barbecue season!
- 2 cups finely chopped sweet onion (about 1 good-size onion)
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 pounds ground turkey breast
- 8 slices bacon, diced
- 1-2 Tbsp chili powder, depending on your spice preference
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
- 1 poblano or jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely diced
- 1 cup frozen corn kernels
- 1 14-oz can diced tomatoes
- ½ cup sundried tomatoes, finely chopped
- 1 14-oz can pinto beans
- ½ cup black beans
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp fancy molasses
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 ½ cups chicken stock
- OPTIONAL TOPPINGS
- Grated cheese
- Sour cream
- Diced avocado
- Corn chips
- In a large pot over medium-high heat, cook the onions and garlic in the olive oil for several minutes, until beginning to soften. Add ground turkey and bacon and cook for 7-10 minutes, until cooked through.
- Add chili powder, smoked paprika, cumin, salt, and pepper. Stir well and cook for 2-3 minutes, until spices are fragrant. Add the poblano pepper, corn, diced tomatoes, sundried tomatoes, pinto beans, black beans, brown sugar, molasses, and bay leaves. Stir to combine and allow to cook for several minutes. Stir in the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Place the lid on the pot, reduce heat, and simmer for at least 2 hours. Remove bay leaves before serving.
*Adapted from “Let Me Feed You” by Rosie Daykin.