Saturday, June 29, 2013

Turkey Chili with Pinto and Kidney Beans

Since my parents (or at least my mom) don't eat beef these days, I came up with this chili recipe using ground turkey instead of ground beef for my dad's 87th birthday, which was this past June 26th. Happy Birthday, dad!! For the occasion, Elaine made some fab oven beer-roasted spare ribs, which Dan finished off on the grill with some BBQ sauce, and I made the sides, which consisted of the turkey chile and some Japanese-style potato salad Dessert was a simple home-made sesame ice cream

Unfortunately, I forgot to take photos of the final product, so will have to defer that to the next time I make this recipe.

1 lb. dried pinto beans
1 lb. dried red kidney beans
1 large red onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, diced
3 jalapeños, seeded and sliced
6 cloves garlic, minced
6 slices bacon, chopped
3 lbs. 85/15 (refers to the fat content) ground turkey

3 14.5-oz. cans plum tomatoes
1 6-oz. can tomato paste
12 cups water
1 tbsp. salt
1 tbsp. unsweetened dark cocoa powder
1/2 cup beer (I like using Newcastle's brown ale)
2 tbsp. brown sugar
4 tbsp. New Mexico chile powder
1 tbsp. regular chile powder
1 tbsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. ground coriander
2 tsp. paprika
2 tsp. Mexican oregano
1/2 tsp. black pepper

Shredded Cheddar or Mexican blend cheese
Chopped scallions
Sour cream

1. Place the beans in a large bowl and cover (1-2" above the beans) with cold tap water. Soak 6-8 hours or overnight. Rinse the beans, add to a large pot, cover with water and cook over medium-high heat for 2-3 hours or until tender. Set aside.

2. Add 2 tsp. of vegetable oil to a large stock pot and cook the bacon until browned. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. 

3. Remove all but 2 tbsp. of the bacon drippings in the other pan and saute the onions, garlic, bell pepper, and jalapenos over medium-high heat until they just start to caramelize, about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.

4. Add ground turkey and cook until browned. Add canned tomatoes, tomato paste, water, salt, brown sugar, cocoa, spices, beer and drained beans. Stir well. Cover and cook on medium low for 30 minutes to an hour.

5. Garnish with shredded cheese, chopped scallions, and/or sour cream.

Soak the beans 6-8 hours or overnight.

Chopped red onion, green bell pepper, jalapenos, and garlic.

Cook the beans in water for 2-3 hours until tender.


Brown the chopped bacon in 2 tsp. of vegetable oil.

Drain the bacon on paper towels.

Leave 2 tbsp. of the bacon drippings in the pan. Saute the onion, peppers and garlic over medium-high heat until they just start to caramelize, about 8 minutes.


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