Turkey Chili

I had a few bell peppers I needed to use up, so I decided to make some chili for dinner.  I rarely use a recipe for chili, and some are much better than others.  This one tonight was a win.  I realized that my most common mistake is using too much liquid, so I put in much less than I thought it needed, and it turned out perfect.  Not only is this chili tasty, but it is very healthy.

1 pound ground turkey (I use 93/7 fat content)

1/2 orange bell pepper

1/2 green bell pepper

1/2 red bell pepper

1 large onion

1 large carrot

1 large celery stalk

2 T. olive oil

3 cloves garlic

2 T. chili powder

1 T. cumin

2 t. salt

1 t. black pepper

1 T. white sugar

1-28oz can crushed tomatoes

4 c. vegetable stock

1/2 pound dried black beans soaked and boiled

A few splashes of hot sauce

Cook ground turkey over medium-high heat until done.

Chop peppers, onions, celery, and carrot.

Remove cooked turkey from pan and sauté vegetables in some olive oil.

Once vegetables are tender and a bit brown, add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Add spices to the pan.  Adding the spices to the pan before adding liquid brings out the flavors.  Add the  can of crushed tomatoes and vegetable stock (you could use chicken stock if you would rather).

Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes.  Add the black beans.  Simmer for another 5 minutes.

Serve with sour cream, cheese, and some corn chips.

Variations: Feel free to use ground beef instead of turkey.  To vary the amount of spice, add hot chilis and/or more hot sauce.  I will often use jalapenos, pablanos, and anaheim peppers, but any pepper of your choice is fine.



The other day my husband suggested we have meatball sandwiches for dinner.  I love meatball sandwiches actually, but I had not made them in a long time.  Meatballs are a great and versatile food.  They freeze well so you can make them in advance.  They work on pasta, in sandwiches, with couscous, etc.  Below is a very basic recipe, but you can easily add more to customize your meatballs.

1 pound of meat (beef, pork, turkey, or lamb)  I made plain beef ones this time but I think a beef/pork mix tastes better.)

1 egg

1/2 c. breadcrumbs

1 onion finely chopped or grated

Salt and Pepper to taste

Mix it all together by hand.  I have tried to do it with a spoon because I am not a fan of mixing meat by hand, but I always end up tossing the spoon aside because it really doesn’t work.  Roll into balls about one and a half inches wide.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes.  I suggest lining your baking pan with tinfoil.  The meatballs leak out a bunch of fat and it is not fun to clean off your pan.


Italian meatballs: add basic, oregano, and garlic to the meat

Greek meatballs: use some lamb in the meat base and add some mint

Swedish: add some nutmeg and cardamom

Or: add your favorite spices and make up your own custom meatballs

You can also vary the size of your meatballs, just vary the baking time.  For small ones, about half an inch or so, you can cook them on the stove top with a little olive oil.

Note: If you freeze meatballs, a good way to thaw them is to put them in a saucepan with a little water and put over medium heat until they are warm.