Tailgating, watching the football game at home, or, forget football, maybe you’re just lamping out on the couch catching up on your back-logged DVR? Whatever your “Sunday fun-day” revolves around, this hearty chili should be your sidekick. Joe stumbled upon this recipe one Fall weekend a couple years ago and it’s the only chili we’ve bothered with since. Infused with the smokey and fiery tones of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce and a robustly flavored Mexican lager, it’s a surefire way to take the chill out of the blustery days ahead. Plus, have you noticed all of the colorful garnishes on top? From green onions to jack cheese to avocado, there are endless directions you can take this dish.
We were fortunate enough to score tickets for this weekend’s Giants-Dolphins game and had a rock star crew that threw together an impressive tailgate smorgasbord including today’s chili recipe, a decadent cheese fondu, parmesan and parsley flavored sausage pinwheels, grilled chicken, turkey burgers, and brownies. Not too bad for some rookies! Anyhow, I decided to double this recipe, so we’d have plenty for the game as well as leftovers for this week’s lunch. It traveled and reheated well. However, here’s a nugget of tailgating wisdom: flat pans work best on grills when preparing hot food. Silly me brought a pot that wouldn’t allow us to close the grill’s lid and, consequently, a lot of heat was lost in the gusty winds. You live, you learn. Check out some pics from our tailgate below.
I like to serve the chili with a piece of toasted crusty bread for dipping, but tortilla chips would also work well. I’m thinking of tossing in some corn and chopped bell peppers next time to up the veggie factor and add texture and color. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do.
30- Minute Turkey Chili
Recipe by Food Network Test Kitchens
6 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 medium yellow onions, chopped
10 cloves garlic, chopped
2 Tbsp. kosher salt
4 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. dried oregano
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
2 chipotle chile en adobo, coarsely chopped, with 2 Tbsp. sauce
2 pounds ground turkey
2 (12-ounce) Mexican lager-style beer
1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, with their juice
2 15 1/2-ounce cans kidney beans, rinsed and drained
Optional garnishes: sliced scallions, chopped cilantro, avocado, sour cream, grated cheddar or Monterey jack cheese, crumbled bacon, chopped fresh tomato, lime wedges
Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, salt, chili powder, and oregano and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and the chipotle chile and sauce; cook 1 minute more. Add the turkey, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, and cook until the meat loses its raw color, about 3 minutes. Add the beer and simmer until reduced by about half, about 8 minutes. Add the tomatoes–crushing them through your fingers into the skillet–along with their juices and the beans; bring to a boil. Cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until thick, about 10 minutes.
Ladle the chili into bowls and serve with your favorite garnishes. I like it best with a generous helping of Monterey jack cheese, oodles of cilantro, and green onions
A few notes:
- If you like your chili on the saucy side, stick with the ten minutes of simmer time. If you prefer something more substantial (I do), double the simmer time to twenty minutes and re-assess.
- I was on a meat boycott at one point last year. I guess I just needed a break. Anyhow, I made this recipe with crumbled firm tofu in place of the ground turkey, added more beans, and popped in some veggies like mushrooms and zucchini. While the turkey definitely adds something to the dish, the flavor foundation is really found in the onions, garlic, chiles and beer. If you are a vegetarian, you will most certainly enjoy this variation.
- We use Negra Modelo beer. Loaded with flavor, but doesn’t overpower the dish as a darker lager sometimes can.