Over the last few days here in Calgary the weather finally decided it was so over summer. Not even a week and a half ago it was 30 degrees Celsius out, and then two days ago I woke up to is being -4 and thick frost on my car... I had to use an ice scraper! I was worried I would have to bring out the winter clothing, and skip all my awesome fall stuff all together. I kind of panicked because I don't have winter boots anymore, mine bit the dust last year after 11 years and wearing them while serving my full time mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I guess it was about time I bought new ones!
With this cooler weather I just wanted something hearty and healthy. Often you think those two words can't go hand in hand, hearty means to me decadent and filling. Healthy often means...the opposite, haha. Not this time though, I decided to make my usual chili with a few swaps and changes.
How many of you like ground beef? I am actually not the biggest fan, but have used it in your typical lasagnas, burgers, chili's, and stuff like that. I do not like meat loaf or hamburger helper (I grew up eating a lot of ground beef, as well as my husband), so for me I like to use other meats that are not so greasy and don't leave my stomach feeling icky. Give me an amazing cut of beef any day and I will scarf that down, there is just something about ground beef that I just can't get over, maybe it's the texture!
For me ground Turkey and Chicken are where it is at. These alternatives are higher in protein, lower in calories and fat. So this chili I use ground turkey and added cumin, and other Hispanic spices to add some awesome flavours to it.
Healthy Turkey Chili
2 pounds of lean ground Turkey
1 - 540 ml can of pinto beans
1 - 540 ml can of black beans
1 - 156 ml can of tomato paste
64 ounces of whole canned tomatoes
1 large or 2 medium sized onions, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon of cumin
1 teaspoon of oregano
1 teaspoon of chili powder
1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of ground pepper
3 bay leaves
2 tablespoons of olive oil, or canola
Open the cans of beans and rinse them in a fine mesh strainer. Set aside.
In a large pot, heat up the oil on a medium high heat, add the onions and ground turkey. Brown the ground turkey and cook the onions until transparent. Add the garlic and spices, cook until fragrant.
Dump the tomatoes, with the water, and the tomato paste into the pot. Add the rinsed beans. Stir everything together until combined. Add a bit more water if it seems too thick. Place the bay leaves on top, cover and let simmer on a low heat for 1 1/2 hours, or until beans are tender and the liquid has decreased 1/4 of the way down. Remove the bay leaves and discard.
When done, place some chili in a bowl and garnish with shredded sharp cheddar cheese, Greek yogurt (or sour cream), avocado slices, cilantro, and fresh or pickled jalapenos.
I love the Hispanic kick in this chili, plus I find the little garnishes give some great texture to the chili as well. If you like corn bread with your chili, a great one is a Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread by My Evil Twin's Kitchen. This was some of the best cornbread I have ever had!
Stay warm and cozy everyone! This chili I know will help do just that!
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