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Seasons

Turkey chili with spicy chips

(Food Styling/Lisa Falso; Suzanne Kreiter/Globe Staff)
December 30, 2009

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Serves 6

Traditional chili is an all-day affair, requiring beans to be soaked and boiled, tough meats slowly braised, and a long simmer to meld all the flavors. We prefer to get a chili on the table in less than 30 minutes - without sacrificing flavor. One secret is to cook chili powder, cumin, and oregano along with the onions as they saute. When it’s time to add beans to the pot, open a can. And instead of rinsing the liquid they’re packed in, add it to the mixture. Use ground turkey (both light and dark), which gives you a meaty taste and texture but little fat. Then simmer the chili in tomatoes with tomato puree. Finish with fresh cilantro and lime juice; both add something bright and sweet. You can make an even quicker version with chopped cooked turkey (simmer the rest of the ingredients and add the cooked meat at the last minute just to reheat it). Toast pita chips with chili powder and salt, to make a spicy topping, and let your guests add a few shots of hot sauce to intensify their bowls.

CHIPS

3 whole-wheat pita, each cut into 6 wedges
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 teaspoon chili powder
Salt, to taste
1. Set the oven at 350 degrees. Brush the pita wedges with oil, and sprinkle with chili powder and salt. Lay on a rimmed baking sheet without overlapping.

2. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes or until the chips are golden brown and crisp.

CHILI

2 tablespoons canola oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1 medium red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and diced
1 pound mixed dark and white ground turkey
1 can (14 to 15 ounces) diced tomatoes
1 cup tomato puree
2 cans (15 to 16 ounces) black beans (do not drain)
Salt and black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon lime juice
Hot sauce (for serving)
1. In a large flameproof casserole over medium-high heat, heat the oil until it is hot. Add the garlic and cook, stirring often, for 1 to 2 minutes or until aromatic.

2. Add the onion, chili powder, cumin, and oregano. Cook over low heat, stirring often, for 3 minutes. Add the bell pepper and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes or until the pepper and onions soften.

3. Add the turkey and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes or until meat is no longer pink.

4. Add the tomatoes, tomato puree, black beans with their liquid, salt, and black pepper. Bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until the turkey is cooked through.

5. Add cilantro and lime juice. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and black pepper, if you like. Serve with pita chips and hot sauce. Keri Fisher