Chicken Chili 2011

Bee Brulee Chicken Chili

2 lbs boneless chicken breast (or use pulled chicken from a rotisserie chicken- about 3 cups worth)

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 large onion, diced

3 medium jalapenos, minced (keep seeds for spicier chili)

3 poblano chiles, stemmed, seeded and chopped

3 anaheim chiles, stemmed, seeded, and chopped (if using dried chiles- see note at bottom- prep dried chilies first!)

6 garlic cloves, minced (about 2 Tablespoons)

2 cans Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

6 Tablespoons butter

1/4 cup of all-purpose flour

2 cups chicken broth (divided)

2 cups half and half

2 tsp hot sauce (we like Cholula!)

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice (from 2 to 3 limes)

2 tablespoons chili powder

1 1/2 tsp coriander

3 teaspoons ground cumin

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

2 4-oz. cans of diced mild green chilies, drained

1 1/2 cups of Monterey jack cheese shredded

1/2 cup minced cilantro

Extra Toppings for your finished bowl: diced fresh tomato, diced avocado, sour cream, more cheese, diced bacon, crushed tortilla chips, more squeeze from a lime, diced jalapeno, etc...

1. If using a rotisserie chicken, pull off all the meat and put aside. Skip to step 3.

2. If using boneless chicken breast, chop in to 1/2" pieces. Season with salt, pepper and some chili powder (maybe a tsp or so) Heat oil in a large dutch oven over medium-high heat. Cook until browned and done. Remove chicken from pot and put aside.

3. In the same dutch oven (don't clean out the chicken cookings! Flavor Layers!), add the vegetable oil and heat over medium heat. When oil is hot, add onions, jalapenos, poblanos, anaheims, cumin, coriander, 1/4 tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp of pepper, and chili powder. Cover and cook- stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes. Remove vegetables from pot and set aside.

4. In the same pot (don't clean out the flavor layers!), melt the butter over moderately low heat. Don't let it burn. Add the flour and whisk continuously for about three minutes. The flour will darken and smell good.

5. Stir in onion-chiles mixture and gradually add 1 cup of broth and 2 cups of half-and-half whisking the whole time. Bring the mixture to a boil and simmer over low heat, stirring occassionally, for five minutes or until thickened. Stir in hot sauce, lime, cilantro, and season with salt and pepper. Add more chili powder and cumin to taste if necessary. Add beans, green chilies and chicken. If chili is very thick, add the additional one cup of chicken broth. Cover and cook, stir occassionally for about 20 minutes. Stir in cheese until it melts and serve.

*Note about dried chiles: So easy to use but you have to rehydrate them first. Boil some water, stick in the chiles- let them hang out for about 20-25 minutes until they are soft. Take them out- and deseed-destem. Some folks use the water to substitute for broth in their recipe- totally up to you. If the leftover water tastes bitter, dump it. It has some good spicy flavor to it, go for it! Use it as your layer in this chili, in place of some of the chicken broth.