Monday, April 17, 2017

Sweet Potato Chili

Sweet Potato Chili - made April 1, 2017, adapted from Tastes of Lizzy T
I’ve been trying to cook again. Or at least, I make one thing over the weekend that’ll feed me some random meals during the week and call it a day. Chili has become my fallback meal. It’s easy to make, tastes better the next day and freezes easily. Plus I get to use the spices I ordered from Penzey’s! As with Pernigotti, I’m not affiliated with the company. I just like their products and the company itself so I tout their virtues whenever I can. Plus, their spices are what's encouraging me to cook more. Once I've bought them, I have to use them, right?

When it comes to chili, the hardest thing is chopping up the ingredients and in the case of this recipe, even that isn’t very hard. The only mise en place I had to do was peel and chop the onion and sweet potatoes. I cheated on the minced garlic because I had a (free) jar of minced garlic from Penzey’s that I used instead of fresh garlic. It was pretty good in the Skillet ChickenAlfredo Pizza and I’m not snobby about garlic so using it from the jar was just fine with me.
I modified this recipe, mostly by cutting the amount of chili powder in half. Not out of any culinary skill or preference but simply because I only had a 1/4-cup jar of chili powder from Penzey’s and not half a cup. At first I thought it was going to end up too soupy to be chili but I let it boil and boil (and boil), partially covered, until it had thickened enough to surpass the soupy stage. And once it had cooled, even when heated up the next day, it had thickened up to a satisfyingly chili-like consistency. Fortunately, my sweet potatoes didn’t disintegrate into mush and held up quite well but you might not want to chop them too small in case you have to boil your chili for a bit longer.
This chili had some heat. I wouldn’t say it was spicy-hot (me and my bland taste buds balk at that) but it was flavorful. If I sound surprised, you have to understand I’m a bland eater and a bland cook who never used to really use spices. But I feel like I successfully used spices this time to make something with rich, robust flavor rather than be spicy-hot; that doesn’t happen that often. Go me. Go chili.
1 pound ground beef
1 pound ground turkey
1 onion, chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 29.5-ounce tomato sauce
2 cups diced tomatoes with juice
3 cups beef stock
5 cups sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 15.5-ounce can kidney beans, drained
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon thyme
2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
1/4 cup chili powder
dash of oregano
dash of red pepper flakes
  1. In a large saucepan, brown ground beef, ground turkey, onions and garlic. Drain off the fat.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients to the saucepan. Mix well, bring to a boil and simmer, covered, for about 30 to 40 minutes or until the sweet potatoes are cooked through.
  3. Remove and discard the bay leaves. Serve.

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