two exciting things to talk about today (in the midst of horrible tragedy that makes me so angry and so sad i don’t have anything productive to say about it right now): salsa verde turkey chili AND my first ever reader survey!
we’ll start with the chili. it’s a good thing this salsa verde turkey chili is delicious and makes excellent leftovers (dare i say better than when it’s freshly made?), since the recipe serves 12 (yes, there are still just 2 of us) and i’ve made it 3 times in as many weeks as i’ve been testing the recipe. (read: there has consistently been at least one, if not several, container(s) of salsa verde turkey chili in the fridge at all times for the past 3 weeks.) the other good news is that i’ve learned a few things along the way.
first, the turkey. unless a recipe is really specific and gives me a really good reason, i tend to buy whatever ground turkey i want as it pertains to the percentage of fat that it contains. frequently, this means 93% lean, sometimes it means 99%, and rarely it means 85% (usually 85% in the fridge is the result of a very prescriptive recipe that i’m trying out).
apparently over the summer i made something with 93% lean turkey, because that’s what i pulled out of the freezer for batch two of this chili. one bite into the chili i learned that 93% lean turkey imparts WAY more turkey flavor to the chili than 99% lean does.
for those of you who like things to have “meaty flavor”, this is good to know. for those of us who like turkey to innocuously provide some lean protein and otherwise stay out of the way, this is also good to know. henceforth, i will be sticking to 99% lean turkey when i make this chili, but you may wish to take this information and head in the opposite direction.
second, the beans. in trying to nudge this chili away from being one of those brothy soups that i tend not to prefer, i had the brilliant idea to blend some of the beans before adding them to the soup. um, nope. that was not a success. soups where all of the beans get blended, like chick pea, tomato, and pasta soup, can be delicious. soups where only some of the beans get blended are apparently decidedly non-delicious. (well, technically it was the consistency, not the flavor, but either way, we won’t be doing that again.)
the last thing that i learned was inadvertently the answer to my consistency experiment. it turns out that i like this soup better a day or two after it was made. the beans soften just a little bit and give a little bit of a thicker texture to the broth, without turning into sludge, like my blended beans did. so, leftovers for the win! (pro tip: the beans tend to explode out of the bowl in the microwave so use a small saucepan on the stovetop to reheat the soup or have your microwave-cleaning sponge handy…)
alright, i think that’s everything we need to know about this salsa verde turkey chili. oh! one more thing: i’m not saying you *have* to wait to make this, i’m just saying there is spiced pumpkin cornbread coming on thursday, soooo…
ok, now can we talk about this reader survey for a second? because i’m really excited to hear from you.
i want tasty seasons to be awesome. i have some ideas on how i can continue to improve and i’m super jazzed to hear your ideas on what you’d like to see around here. because in the end, that’s what’s important. otherwise i could just keep shoving print outs with handwritten notes scribbled all over them into my overstuffed binders and not mess around with things like “web hosting servers” (well, ok, my husband does that part…) and “pinterest” (that’s me! unfortunately…).
so if you would be so kind as to find a few minutes in your day sometime between now and friday, october 13th to tell me what you think, i would be SUPER grateful. and don’t think that you have to h’actually make the recipes here to take the survey! i read blogs too; i know how this works. i used fanciness to create a survey where you will only be answering questions that pertain to you, provided you answer honestly. so please don’t pass just because you don’t do much of that “cooking” thing you hear people talk about doing…
and don’t worry, i’m soooo not into that internet-trickery-survey-business where you take the whole thing and then all you have to do to submit the survey is enter your email address, phone number, social security number, ATM pin, and mother’s maiden name. i’m not asking for any of that nonsense. just your opinions, and who doesn’t love giving those??
so without further ado, here is the link to the first ever tasty seasons reader survey! and a big virtual hug to you, whether you take the survey or not (though you won’t be surprised to hear that i hope you *do* take it, so i can make tasty seasons the kind of awesome you’re* most excited to see). y’all are the best and i know it sounds cliché but you really are what keeps me from just stashing messy notes in a binder makes this whole thing worthwhile.
*well, the average of you and your survey taking friends, anyway.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 lb. (454 g. / 16 oz.) ground turkey, see notes
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 1 fresh poblano pepper, diced, see notes
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 3 large cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (ground red pepper)
- 2 whole bay leaves
- 4 oz. (113 g.) canned diced green chiles
- 16 oz. (454 g.) salsa verde (green salsa), see notes
- 32 fl. oz. (4 cups / 946 ml) low sodium chicken broth
- 1 cup (8 fl. oz. / 240 ml) water
- (2) 15 oz. (425 g.) cans of low sodium cannellini or great northern beans, rinsed and drained
- ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro (leaves only, no stems this time)
- heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat. when the oil is hot, add the turkey and cook it until all of the pink is gone, frequently using the edge of a spatula to break the turkey into small pieces. once all of the pink is gone, transfer the turkey to a bowl and set aside.
- replace the now empty pot on the stove and add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil. add the onion, poblano, and bell pepper. sauté for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables begin to soften. add the garlic and stir frequently for 30 seconds to 1 minute, until the garlic is fragrant and softened.
- add the cumin, oregano, and cayenne pepper; stir constantly for 30 seconds until the spices are evenly distributed and fragrant. add the cooked turkey, bay leaves, green chiles, salsa verde, broth, and water (everything but the beans). turn the heat up to bring the chili to a simmer, then cover and turn the heat down to keep it at a gentle simmer. simmer for 30 minutes.
- uncover, turn the heat up to medium-high, and add the beans. stir to combine and simmer for 10 minutes, until the beans are heated through. remove the bay leaves and serve hot, topped with fresh cilantro. cornbread on the side is not a terrible idea. leftovers tend to splatter in the microwave (the beans explode) so i recommend reheating this soup on the stovetop. that said, the leftovers keep well and once they are reheated, taste delicious. in fact, i prefer this soup the second or third day, when the beans have broken down a little bit more and thickened the soup a little bit.
as i mentioned above, 85% and 93% lean turkey gives this chili a much stronger turkey flavor than 99% lean does. i like this chili best with 99% but if you are more carnivorously-oriented than me (read: like the taste of meat at all), you may wish to use 85% or 93% lean turkey.
if you are a person who usually wears latex(free) gloves to handle jalapeños, you probably want to don a pair for the poblano. i thought i would be ok since they’re generally not as hot as jalapeños. i wasn’t.
if you have a favorite salsa verde/green salsa, carry on and skip the following. if you don’t and have tried several and haven’t liked any of them, welcome; you’re among friends. i only very recently discovered two that i like, after years of trying and not liking various brands. my short list of delicious green salsas is as follows:
- whole foods 365 roasted verde salsa (conveniently for this recipe, comes in a 16 oz. jar)
- trader joe’s hatch valley salsa (inconveniently for this recipe, comes in a 12 oz. jar) – this one is spicier than the whole foods one
finally, 12 is a lot of servings. if that sounds overwhelming and you like scrambled eggs with sautéed peppers, may i recommend making a half batch of the soup and using the other half of the canned green chiles, poblano, and bell peppers in some sort of spicy egg situation? that was my survival strategy for round two and it worked out nicely.
adapted from the green chile chili in the penzeys spice catalog.