Friday, February 13

The Way to a Man's Heart

So I know I gave you a list of things I wanted to do for DIY Valentine's Day gifts, but I was sitting here going back and forth about what my third and final project would be and then it occurred to me that the best way into his heart is definitely through his stomach. 

And Jace agrees!  

In keeping with our eat better resolution though, I knew I wanted to keep it healthy while also making one of his favorites - chili! A little something to warm the belly and the heart! I went with a white chicken chili and kinda came up with it based on what we already had in the cabinet, and it's really easy, and even better, easily adaptable for your personal touch.

So you'll be needing:
  • White Kidney Beans
  • Pinto Beans
  • Kidney Beans (optional)
  • 2 Chicken Breasts
  • Chicken Stock (2 c.)
  • Water (7c.)
  • White Wine (1 c.)
  • S&P (to taste)
  • Cumin (1 tsp.)
  • 3-4 Cloves of garlic, diced
  • Hot Sauce (to taste)
And anything else you can think of!

The base is about a cup each of white kidney beans, and pinto beans but just because I had them on hand I went ahead and tossed in about a quarter cup of red kidney beans as well, for a little bit of color. Rinse them in water and pick out and of the split beans that you find. 
Then, combine with 5 cups of water in a stockpot and bring to a boil. At this point I added a pinch of salt, then cover your pot and let it be for about an hour. 

With twenty minutes left, I threw some olive oil (about a tablespoon) in my cast iron. I tenderized two chicken breasts and dusted them with a little salt, pepper, and cumin. After the pan was good and hot I placed them in, and got a good sear on the first side and flipped them after about two minutes. Now, the fun part. Once they're belly down I splashed them with a little white wine, I had Sauvignon Blanc on hand, and once it was good and bubbly added about 3 cloves of minced garlic. Using a spoon, I tilted the pan and dressed the top of the chicken a few good times, (by the way, the smell - heavenly - I wish I could bottle it, but anyways...). Let the chicken finish cooking and transfer it to a cutting board. 

After it rests for a little bit, I diced it in a rough chop. It's going to be in the broth for awhile which will cause it to break up and shred naturally, so you don't necessarily have to shred it by hand. Oh! but hey quick tip, if you are lucky enough to own a stand mixer (mine is named Phillip), you can totally chuck your chicken breasts in there with the paddle attachment and run it at about 5 and before you know it, shredded chicken! 
But back to the chili, at this point the beans are done so strain the water off of them and toss them back in the pot with another 2 cups of water, and 2 1/2 cups of chicken stock, then dump the chicken in there. 

Now is where you are free to get creative. I added about 1/2 cup of freshly chopped parsley, some diced roasted red peppers, for a little bit of added creaminess and southern comfort flair I threw in a can of creamed corn, about a tablespoon of hot sauce (we like things spicy), a little more garlic and cumin, and then about 1/2 cup of ranch. You could totally put in a jalapeno if you wanted, I would have, I just didn't have one on hand, or even just a diced green bell pepper. I also added another splash of white wine, to bring out the flavor of the chicken. 

Now you just have to let the liquid cook off, depending on what all you threw in the pot it could take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour, but really it's just going to get better the longer all the ingredients have to stew together. Now to top it off may I suggest a sprinkle of fresh cilantro, maybe some fresh salsa, or maybe a dollop of sour cream. Serve it up with a glass of white and some crusty bread and you'll have a winner. 

Needless to say, surprising him with a hot bowl of chili when he walked in the door after a long day at work won me some serious points. 

Let me know what you toss in this chili, I love adapting recipes!

Oh, and Happy Valentine's Day! 


  1. Happy Valentines Birthday Bayley! Poppy made us chilli too. Yours sounds really yummy:)

  2. Happy Valentines Birthday Bayley! Poppy made us chilli too. Yours sounds really yummy:)


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