I’ve tried several chili recipes over the years and this one is definitely my favorite. It’s flavorful, spicy, and hearty. The recipe comes from the January 2003 issue of Cooking Light, and not only is this chili delicious, it’s also fairly low calorie. It’s easy to make, and it’s the perfect thing to have on a cold day. I like to serve this chili with homemade cornbread or crusty French bread. Like most chilis, the leftovers are excellent and the flavors only improve over time. And if you are looking for a recipe for vegetarian chili, try this one – it’s also from Cooking Light and it’s another one of my favorites!
- 6 ounces hot (or mild- depending on how much spice you like!) turkey Italian sausage
- 2 cups chopped onion
- 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
- 8 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 pound ground sirloin
- 1 jalapeño pepper, chopped (optional – I always omit this… the chili is spicy enough for me without it)
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 ¼ cups Merlot or other fruity red wine (beef broth can be substituted)
- 2 (28-ounce) cans whole tomatoes, un drained and coarsely chopped
- 2 (15-ounce) cans kidney beans, drained
- ½ cup (2 ounces) shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
- Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Remove the casings from the sausage. Add the sausage, onion, and the next 4 ingredients (onion through jalapeño (if using)) to the pan; cook 8 minutes or until the sausage and beef are browned, stirring to crumble.
- Add the chili powder and the next 7 ingredients (chili powder through bay leaves), and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in the wine, tomatoes, and kidney beans; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat, and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
- Uncover and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Discard the bay leaves. Sprinkle each serving with cheddar cheese.
Makes: 8 servings (each serving size is 1 ¼ cups)
Source: Cooking Light Magazine