maureen tanKENTUCKY (12/04/12) - I love when I make a recipe for the first time, and it works. Of course, we’re talking chili today, not beef bourguignon.

Still, things happen, right?

I was in my early teens when I stood at the electric stove and cooked my first pot of chili. It was a time when I would tear the sides of my blue jeans to add a triangle of paisley, multi-colored material to create a larger bell-bottom, and wear my older sister Anne’s platform shoes so I could reach the knobs on the back of the stove.

Yes. I just related stirring a pot of chili to my somewhat innocent, prepubescent life of the 70s.

The chili of my youth was loaded with tomatoes, dark red kidney beans, onions, green peppers, and ground beef. It wasn’t as spicy as some of the chili I make these days, but cooking a pot of chili, is, by far, one of those comfort-food experiences that makes me happy, instantly transporting me, with its sweet, warm, belly-full of goodness.

Plus chili makes great leftovers, which means less time spent in the kitchen.

I cooked my first pot of chicken chili after visiting with my family in PA for my niece’s wedding this past October. It was a revelation of sorts.

My sister, Eileen, had prepared Rachel Ray’s buffalo chicken chili. It was simmering on the stovetop when I’d arrived from the airport to her house.

I was over the moon with the fiery scent of spicy wings. And I don’t even like to eat chicken wings. But I do like to eat less meat.

Plus Elvis loves chili, and buffalo chicken wings.

When I got back to KY, I went ahead, bought the ingredients, and then casually mentioned to Elvis that I was cooking chili.

With ground chicken, not beef.

I should mention, I’d previously tried to switch out the protein base in a few pots of chili, without telling Elvis, subbing ground beef with a little pork and turkey, for instance. But Elvis loves his chili. He’d called me out.

You think I’d know better.

But what I did know is, he’d go for it. Because I’d also mentioned cornbread pancakes to go along with the chicken chili.

And although Rachel Ray’s chili was good, easy-to prepare, easier on our waistlines and hearts (minus the cornbread), I won’t be making that recipe again.

Elvis doesn’t like buffalo chicken wings that much after all.

My Chicken and White Bean Chili recipe came about from a pound of ground chicken that I’d bought and froze.

I was optimistic about that ground chicken chili idea, huh?

So instead of making Buffalo Chicken Chili, or Garlic-Parmesan Chicken Meatballs (mmm, Reagan really enjoyed those), I thought of the chili of my youth.

And did a little subbing. Again.

beans chicken

Chicken Chili with White Beans

Ingredients
•1/4 cup olive oil
•1 yellow onion, chopped
•1 tablespoon shallots
•1 pound ground chicken
•3 cups fresh tomato juice*
•1 six ounce can tomato paste
•1 tablespoon or about 6 slices Pickled jalapeño hot & sweet, diced, plus more for garnish
•1 can Northern beans, drained
•1 four ounce can green chile peppers, diced
•1/2 teaspoons cumin
•1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
•tablespoons chili powder
•1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds, toasted and ground
•Kosher salt and black pepper, to season meat and taste
•2 tablespoons Masa
•1 whole lime, quartered or sliced for garnish plus 2 teaspoons lime juice
•Sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, sliced jalapenos (optional)

Directions
•In large stockpot, heat olive oil on medium heat, add onions, shallots, and cook, stirring occasionally, about four minutes. If onions start to brown, reduce heat a bit.
•Add ground chicken and break it up with the back of wooden spoon. Do not brown. Cook about five minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink.
•Add tomatoes, paste, seasonings and stir.
•Cover with a vented lid, reduce heat to low, and simmer thirty minutes.
•Add beans and diced green chile. Continue to cook about five minutes.
•Taste and adjust with salt and pepper.
•Add 2 teaspoons lime juice and stir.
•To thicken chicken chili, add masa to 1/4 cup of warm water, stir, and then add to chili.
•Serve immediately.
•Top chili with sour cream, lime wedges, shredded cheddar cheese and sliced jalapenos, (optional).
•Refrigerate unused portions for up to a week, or freeze for up to two months.

*If a chunkier chili is desired, sub a twenty-eight ounce can of chopped tomatoes, drained

Maureen C. Berry
Freelance Writer and Blogger
Visit Maureen’s nationally renowned culinary website at www.cuisinebymaureen.com.

Disclaimer: The content supplied by columnists and letters to the Editor on this site does not in any way, shape or form, implied or otherwise, necessarily express or suggest endorsement or support of any of such content, statement, or opinions therein. SurfKY News does not necessarily adhere to or endorse content provided by outside non-staff sources.

LIKE SurfKY on Facebook - Click here to LIKE us now.

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

In Other News...

Budget Committee Meeting April 2

HOPKINS COUNTY, Ky. (3/31/15) — The Hopkins Fiscal Court Budget, Audit and Personnel Committee will have a special… Read More

DCSO Seeking Suspect in Alleged Disturbance Involving Firearms

DAVIESS COUNTY, Ky. (3/31/15) — According to a Daviess County Sheriff's Office report, on March 31, 2015 at 1:09 a.m.,… Read More

Most Read This Week

March 27, 2015 6120

Three Arrested during Execution of Search…

by Madisonville Police Department/Hopkins County Detention Center
March 25, 2015 5576

Fazoli's, Roses Coming to Madisonville

by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
March 24, 2015 5273

One Dies, Another Injured in Mortons Gap Traffic…

by Deputy Heath Owens
March 25, 2015 5216

Grand Jury Finds No Criminal Wrongdoing in Bean…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
March 30, 2015 4935

Man Charged with Child Abuse After Allegedly…

by Madisonville Police Department
March 24, 2015 4350

UPDATE: One Injured in Hopkinsville Road Accident

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News

Most Read This Month

March 09, 2015 14283

Multi-Agency Drug Bust Results in $1 Million Meth…

by KSP DESI
March 02, 2015 11711

Madisonville Teen Faces Numerous Drug Charges

by Madisonville Police Department/Hopkins County Detention Center

Stories Trending Today

March 31, 2015 2225

Man Charged for Driving While under Influence of…

by Madisonville Police Department
March 31, 2015 1353

Happenings and Meetings - Hopkins County

by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
March 31, 2015 1310

Covenant Community Church Hosts Annual…

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
March 31, 2015 1071

Hopkins County Misdemeanor Indictments

by Karen McKnight
March 31, 2015 1040

Madisonville Police Reports Released - March 31,…

by Madisonville Police Department
March 31, 2015 765

Glema Center April Schedule Features Jo Dee…

by Gary Gates, SurfKY News
March 30, 2015 689

Members from Madisonville Police, Hopkinsville…

by Abbie Darst
March 31, 2015 484

Baptist Health Madisonville Upgrades Technology…

by Baptist Health
March 31, 2015 455

KSP Charges Henderson County Man with Possession…

by Kentucky State Police
March 31, 2015 447

United Way Honors Organizations, Businesses,…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News