When my mother recently discovered I had started a food blog, she promptly sent me a stack of papers with random recipes accumulated over the years. Many were familiar favorites, like her mac and cheese recipe or her whole wheat pancakes. Others were clippings from sources unknown, with “Never made this” scrawled at the top in her chicken scratch. In the former lot was a poor quality Xerox of an old newspaper clipping describing this recipe from a book called Chilimania! The Chilihead’s Handbook by Herb and Chris Geltner. Apparently my Aunt Sue once cooked this chili for my mother with great success, so much so that it is now known in our family as Aunt Sue’s White Chicken Chili.
Though I am not usually much of a chili lover, what with not eating red meat and a lot of veggie chilis being seriously sub-par, this one is good enough to become a staple in our household. This chili tends towards the less runny side especially if you double the chicken in it as we did when we made it the other night. Our finished product ended up being more like chicken doused in a mild sauce with a slight chili kick for additional interest. Though it will seem bland to those who are prefer 4-alarm chilis, those who prefer a more subtle heat will enjoy this dish. We served it over rice with a little melted cheese on top and plan to double or triple the recipe next time and freeze the leftovers to save for when we’re too busy to cook.
Aunt Sue’s White Chicken Chili (serves 3-4)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into cubes
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 can (4 oz) chopped green chilis
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp oregano leaves
1/2 tsp cilantro
1/8 to 1/4 tsp ground red pepper
1 can (19 oz) white kidney (cannellini) beans, undrained
shredded monterey jack cheese (for garnish)
sliced green onions(for garnish)
1. Heat olive oil in a 3-quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Add chickenn and cook 4-5 minutes, stirring often. Remove chicken with slotted spoon, cover and keep warm.
2. Add onion to saucepan and cook two minutes. Stir in remaining ingredients and simmer for 30 minutes. Stir in cooked chicken and kidney beans; simmer for 10 minutes. Garnish. Serve over rice, if desired.