Every year we host a Fall Outdoor Gathering for a large group of backpackers and canoeists in Algonquin Provincial Park. The first year we did this we had a chili cook-off and my friend Alison made a chili that was just a little bit different than the traditional style of chili I am used to. The flavor was vibrant and dish delicious.
What I remember, other than the great dish, was that Alison actually brought her red chasseur to cook her chili in. Imagine — taking a beautiful piece of kitchen gear like that car camping! I teased Alison the entire weekend. Not about her bringing such a wonderful vessel but that I was going to take it home with me. I ended up buying my own.
After the event Alison sent me the recipe for the chili she made and it has now become a family favorite. I liked it so much that I bought the cookbook that the recipe came from, Looneyspoons, by sisters-in-law Janet and Greta Podleski.
grocery cart chicken chili
from the Looneyspoons Cookbook © 1997 Janet and Greta Podleski
makes 6 servings
One man’s junk is another man’s treasure! This super-spicy creation is based on a recipe that was found in an abandoned grocery cart at the side of a dirt road. Yes, we’re serious, and no, we’re not garbage pickers.
1-1/2 cups chopped red onions
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 cups chopped green bell pepper
3 jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced
3 cups chopped cooked chicken breast (about 1-1/4 pounds)
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) tomatoes, undrained, cut up
1 cup tomato-based chili sauce
1-1/2 cups low sodium, reduced fat chicken broth
1-1/2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon each Dijon mustard and “lite” Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon each cayenne pepper and black pepper
1 can (15 ounces) red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can (15 ounces) white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese (2 ounces)
Spray a large sauce pan (or nice red Chasseur) with non-stick spray. Add onions, garlic, green peppers, and jalapeños. Cook over medium heat until tender, about 7 minutes.
Add remaining ingredients, except kidney beans and cheese. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add kidney beans and cook 5 more minutes. Ladle chili into individual bowls and top each with a sprinkle of cheese.