When the weather gets cold there is nothing like a good bowl of chili for dinner or lunch, especially on football Sundays. Since we try to keep it healthy-ish around here I went looking for a recipe that was an alternative to a full fat chili and also easy/quick to make. When I came upon this one and saw it included cooking with beer I was sold. Chipotle is the key ingredient that gives the smokey spice to the meat and the beer adds a pretty awesome flavor to the broth. This is a thin chili, that can pack a lot of heat if you want it to, just add an extra chipotle and another spoon of adobo, and it's very easy to double the recipe to have leftovers that taste even better the next day. Other modifications that I've tried using are lean beef instead of turkey (they are surprisingly comparable health wise), different styles of beer, and different toppings, our favorite is low fat grated cheese. The recipe below is supposed to be 4 servings..but it's more realistic to say it's for 2-3 hungry people.
30-Minute Chipotle Turkey Chili (from Food Network Kitchens)
• 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
• 5 cloves garlic, chopped
• 1 tablespoon kosher salt
• 2 teaspoons chili powder
• 1 teaspoon dried oregano
• 1 tablespoon tomato paste
• 1 chipotle chile en adobo, coarsely chopped, with 1 tablespoon sauce
• 1 pound ground turkey
• 1 (12-ounce) Mexican lager-style beer (Corona Light for the health conscious, Modelo works too)
• 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, with their juice (diced tomatoes if you don't want to get messy)
• 1 (15 1/2-ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
• Sliced scallions, cilantro sprigs, sour cream, grated Monterey jack cheese, and/or tortilla chips are all optional
*Reserve 1 additional beer for drinking while cooking.
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 5 minutes. Add the beer and simmer until reduced by about half, about 8 minutes. Open you're reserve beer and enjoy while this happens. 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 the garnishes of your choice.