Martin's Turkey Chili

  1. 1 cup black beans
    3 tbsp olive oil
    1 turkey breast (half breast), skinned
    4 medium yellow onions, chopped
    4 cloves garlic, minced
    3 ribs celery, sliced
  2. 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes
    1 small green pepper, chopped
    1/2 cup water
    4 tbsp chili powder
    1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
    1 tsp whole cumin seed
  1. Toppings: Shredded sharp cheddar cheese and sour cream OR Chopped ripe avocado
  2. Soak the beans overnight in water to cover generously. Drain and rinse briefly.
  3. Heat the oil in a large, heavy bottom pot over medium high heat. When hot, brown the turkey breast well on all sides. Remove and set aside.
  4. Add the onions, garlic, celery, and green pepper. Saute, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are soft, 5-7 minutes.
  5. Add the beans, tomatoes, water, chili powder, cayenne, and the turkey breast. Heat until the pot starts bubbling, then reduce heat to a slow simmer, partially cover, and simmer for 1 1/2 hour. Stir occasionally, watching carefully that the bottom does not start to stick.
  6. Remove the turkey breast, remove the bone, and coarsely shred the meat with two forks (hold the meat with one fork, tear with the grain with the other.) Return the meat to the pot.
  7. Heat a heavy bottom skillet over low heat. Add the whole cumin seed and toast 2-3 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally, until lightly brown and aromatic. Remove from heat.
  8. Coarsely crush the cumin in a mortar and pestle or with a rolling pin. Add to the pot.
  9. Cook an additional one hour, or until the beans are tender.
  10. For the traditional approach, top with the cheese and sour cream; for the modern/healthy approach, top with the avocado.
  11. Recipe by Martin Drabik

Chili Trivia:

  • Chili is the official state food of Texas
  • Cincinnati Chili was inspired by Greek and Macedonian immigrants around the turn of the 20th century
  • The intensity of heat in the taste of the Chile peppers usually decreases as the size of the pepper increases