Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Turkey Taco Chili

October 1st. Can you believe it? I can! I'm so excited that this year is almost over with. You don't know how hard I prayed for the time to go quickly. I know it kind of sucks and you get older and such.. but I just want my boyfriend to come home from Iraq and to be with him. After that the time can slow down. Don't you love how I try to control time? LOL. If anyone is from Las Vegas you would definitely recognize the cooler weather we are experiencing. It is great. Work is picking up and people are starting to buy the winter clothes. Makes me excited. I actually enjoy working the holiday season because it so busy and work goes by quickly!

I decided today is the day I'd post my moms recipe for Turkey Taco Chili. There may be similar recipes floating around but my mom has had this written down for years! I don't know her source but whoever came up with it, wow is it good! We tweaked it slightly, but no matter what it always turns out really good. You can easily use ground beef or just keep it vegetarian style. I'm antsy and want to make a veggie chili. I've seen some with a pumpkin pureed or squash mixed in the bunch, which sounds really hearty and warming to the soul!

This recipe makes a whole lot of chili which can be easily stored in the freezer for nights you don't feel like cooking! The recipe calls for a packet of powdered ranch dressing mix but we usually just leave it out. I don't really see what the difference is with it or not, just more sodium if anything. I usually will add a touch more cumin to the chili and chili powder as well. Chili gotta have a little kick with it you know!! The recipe is simple, not much instruction. If you know how to cook you should be able to figure out what needs to be done and when! Like I said this is how my mom made it for years using this recipe. I hope you enjoy!

Nice warm pot of chili ready to be devoured!
Turkey Taco Chili (Mom's recipe)  
Brown and Cook Together
1 lb ground turkey ( she used extra lean)
1 medium sized sweet onion, chopped
2-3 garlic cloves  

Add While Cooking Above
1 1/2 cups chopped celery  

Stir After You Add Each Ingredient
1 15oz can tomato sauce
1 4oz can diced green chilies
1 15oz can stewed tomatoes
1 pkg taco seasoning (she used reduced sodium by McCormick)
1 pkg Hidden Valley Ranch salad dressing (optional)
2 tsp cumin
2 16oz can of black beans, drained and rinsed
2 16oz can of pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 16oz bag of frozen white corn (used organic yellow corn because I picked the wrong kind up)
1/2 cup of water (you can use chicken or vegetable broth for more flavor. She tends add more water during the cooking process because it evaporates very quickly)

I like to eat my chili many ways. It always good to have corn chips to dip in, top with cheese, sour cream and avocado! Usually the first night it is made I'll have it that way. I like making my OWN corn tortilla chips. So easy.

Baked Corn Tortilla Chips By Fallon
Plain corn tortillas, cut into strips, triangles or leave whole
Cooking spray (Olive oil in a Misto)
Sea salt and other seasonings of choice

Preheat your toaster oven to 400 degrees. Spray cooking spray on small corn tortillas and sprinkle with sea salt. While they cook just flip them around till both sides crisp up. Takes a good 12-15 minutes to get the perfect crisp and no burn. Once out of the oven I let them cool off, so they will harden and break easily. If you do it too soon they will be flimsy. I topped my chili with plain Greek yogurt, sliced avocado, and green onion.

Another way I like to eat my chili is with spaghetti squash! It's the fall season and squash is everywhere. If you've never tried a spaghetti squash before you need to buy one as soon as possible! It the best side dish to have for the winter. With my squash I split it in half. The shell is a little tough so please be careful and not slice any fingers off. I've had some brutal cuts with squash before, so a good knife is very key! I always recommend a strong man to do the squash splitting ;) Once it is split, clean out the seeds from the middle. Place them on a baking sheet that will be heading into a preheated oven of 400 degrees. Place the squash hole side down on the baking sheet and place into the oven. The squash takes about 45 minutes to bake, but start to check on it at around 30 minutes. You know it will be done when a fork goes through it easily, especially through the skin. When the squash has cooled off completely, take a fork and scrap out the squash.

Comes out looking like spaghetti!
Chili is on the bottom, topped with squash and green onion! 
I was missing my corn tortilla so I toasted up 
pumpernickel bread with a smear of Boursin herbed cheese.

The chili was made on Sunday, today is Thursday and we have none left!! We are a family of 3 so you can tell we all really enjoyed it. My dad has requested my mom to make it with ground beef, so I recommended to her that Wholefoods has some great ground beef to use. You can't go wrong with any substitutions with the chili. It is fabulous all the way. It's 3pm but I'm going to go ahead and make dinner a bit early tonight so it is ready for later. Heading over to my best friends house to see her and the baby! He is getting so big and is almost at 6 weeks already.

Tomorrow is Friday, YAY!!


Robin Sue said...

Fallon this is one of my favorite soups to make, so easy and good. Great idea to place the spaghetti squash on there to health it up a bit! Time will fly by and he will be here before you know it, just keep busy, that is how I survived when my man was deployed!

Ashley said...

I love spaghetti squash..but never thought to combine it with turkey chili!! mmmm

Unknown said...

Wow, that chili/spaghetti squash/onion bowl looks amazing! Seriously made me drool. I loooove spaghetti squash! Think I'll make me some tomorrow night, thanks for the inspiration!

Katrina said...

I LOVE chili and would have never thought of adding spaghetti squash! Mmm.