Now that I’ve temporarily banned myself (let’s say with “taken a hiatus from…”) from whole grains, dried cranberries and winter squashes, I was forced to think outside the box for tonight’s dinner. That’s when I realized I haven’t made anything with ground meat of any kind for a while and, after a disappointing rice noodle dish at a local Vietnamese restaurant, I was craving some kind of filling soup. Which leads us to a healthy turkey chili.
For sweetness, I used a roasted red pepper instead of tomatoes. Yes, roasting the peppers is an extra step and takes time, but it’s so wroth it. As I’m stuck with a horrific electric stove, I usually roast the pepper in my oven under the broiler rather than the traditional method of using a gas burner. But I decided to try a different way this time and roast the pepper under the electric burner. It was slow-going but still did the trick. However, next time I’ll go back to the broiler.
In case you’ve never done this before, it’s really simple and actually a lot of fun, or at least it amuses me. Once the pepper skin has been blackened on all sides, place it in a bowl and cover it tightly with plastic wrap to steam. Let it cool to room temperature, then peel away the charred skin with your fingers and rinse the pepper under cold water. Now remove the seeds and slice it like you would a raw pepper. See, fun!
Turkey & Roasted Red Pepper Chili
1 red bell pepper, roasted, peeled, seeded and diced
1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
1 onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
8 ounces mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
1 1/4 pounds ground lean turkey
28 ounces chicken stock
1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons tomato paste
1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
Pinch cayenne pepper
Pinch ground cumin
1 teaspoon minced cilantro
2 15-ounce cans white beans, rinsed
Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in large pot over medium-low heat. Add the onion, garlic and ginger and sweat until soft, about five minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook an additional five minutes, then remove the vegetables from the pot and place in a bowl. Set aside.
Add the remaining oil to the pot and increase the heat to medium-high. Add the ground turkey and stir with a wooden spoon to break into small pieces. Cook until browned, about five minutes, then return the vegetables to the pot. Stir in the chicken stock, tomato paste, vinegar and seasonings and increase the heat to high. Once the liquid comes to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Stir in the beans and cook for an additional five minutes. Enjoy!