24 January 2010

Warm and Hearty Almost White Chili

While recently browsing the internet, reading blogs and bookmarking recipes, I noticed the Pioneer Woman's recipe for White Chili. Now for those of you who live under an internet rock and don't know, Pioneer Woman is one of the rock stars of blogging.  Her entire site is homemade and incredible.  I am so impressed by her willingness to learn and adapt to create such a popular site.  Why don't I have her drive to learn photography?? Anyhoo, before I turn into a total fan-girl here, I just have to say that you should visit her blog and at least read Black Heels to Tractor Wheels (her love story) if nothing else.

Back to that chili- PW's recipe appealed to me because it was simple and looked like it would be the perfect meal for a frigid night. We had plenty of frigid in early January, so the time to make this meal came sooner rather than later.  I ran into a bit of a hiccup with this chili, but it was not due to the recipe.  My crappy marrow beans would not cook through!  Literally I left this pot on the stove for a solid 9 hours, hoping that the beans would be as luscious and creamy as I imagined they should be. They never quite made it.  My dried beans must have been old. It happens.  Next time I will use canned beans or fresher dried beans.

 The god-forsaken beans that wouldn't cook!

Since the beans never cooked as quickly or nicely as they should have, some steps were skipped and some modifications were made.  I was so pissed off at the chili by 10:00 PM that I completely forgot to add the thickening milk and masa (one of the parts of this recipe I was most excited to try!).  Of course, my chili was quite thick from cooking for so long, so I am not sure if it needed the thickener.  Also, since I didn't eat the chili for dinner on the night I had originally intended, I never bothered to add the chicken in to the beans.  So it turned into a vegetarian meal, which I was completely happy to eat.  I would definitely make this recipe again, but I would first offer up to the Bean Gods that my beans actually cook!

I happened to enjoy this chili most with a big spoonful of homemade guacamole on top.  The creamy, spicy avocado really melted into and complemented the chili.  Here is my recipe for guacamole, which I make almost weekly.

Simple Hearty White Chili
adapted from Ree Drummond/The Pioneer Woman

1 whole large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 27 oz can Hatch green chiles, drained and chopped
8 oz dried marrow beans (any white bean should work, could used canned)
8 cups chicken stock
2 jalapenos, chopped
1 1/2 T ground cumin
1 t smoked Spanish Paprika
1/2 t cayenne pepper
salt to taste
pepper to taste
Optional Garnishes: Sour Cream, Cilantro, Guacamole, Pico de Gallo, Tortillas

In a dutch oven over medium-high heat, saute onions, jalapenos and garlic for 2 minutes. Add chopped green chilies, then rinsed beans. Pour chicken broth into the pan. Add all the spices except salt. Place lid on pot and reduce heat to low.
Cook for 2 hours or until beans are done.(or 9 hours!)
Check seasoning and adjust, adding salt and cayenne to taste.
Garnish as desired.


grace said...

in my most humble opinion, chili just ain't chili without beans. white chili is a particular favorite of mine--it tends to be lighter without losing that comforting edge. great bowl of hot stuff!

Laura said...

I noticed that the marrow beans took a while too--although not 9 hours. But I did not cook them in chili, I swear that cooking them in a dish just adds variables that sometimes work and sometimes don't. But at any rate, for white beans they sure took a while--my dinner was almost late bc of them!

Rachel (Hounds in the Kitchen) said...

Last year I was gifted a pressure cooker and that has changed my bean eating experience. I use it all the time to cook dry beans now and it only takes about an hour.

PageRank Check said...

I love this recipe

RecipeGirl said...

Looks terribly comforting. A handful of fritos in there and that's perfect for superbowl!

PS- I love Ree too :)