Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Quinoa Turkey Chili with Sweet Potatoes and Black Beans

The beginning of football season means the beginning of chili season! This isn't exactly the manliest chili recipe, but it's made it's way into our healthy, weeknight rotation. Chili is such a great family recipe because it's so easy to prep while the little guys is napping and it's even better leftover the next day....with an egg on it. (Would also be great as a vegan/veggie option without the turkey.)

It's kinda hard to pass along chili recipes because so much of the seasoning is to taste. This recipe is a great guideline, but I always doctor it up with a few dashes of: soy sauce (great way to add salt), worcestershire, sugar (to balance out the acidity of the tomato). My favorite secret ingredient is grating some Mexican hot chocolate into it. You can find Mexican hot chocolate at any Mexican market and it looks like a hockey puck. It's strong, so just grate a little bit in and it gives your chili a hint of mole. The best.

Quinoa Turkey Chili with Sweet Potatoes and Black Beans
Recipe adapted from www.epicurous.com and picture from www.eatingwelllivingthin.wordpress.com

1 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 1/2 cups water

1 1/2 cups chicken stock or water
1/2 pound lean ground turkey

1 1/2 cups diced sweet potatoes (about 2-3 small ones)
1 large sweet onion, chopped
1 medium sweet red pepper, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cans (15 ounces each) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
1 medium zucchini, chopped
1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, chopped
1 tablespoon adobo sauce

1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt (I used way more)
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 cup frozen corn, thawed
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro (optional)

In a large saucepan, bring quinoa and 1 1/2 cups water to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 12-15 minutes or until water is absorbed. Remove from the heat; fluff with a fork and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan coated with cooking spray, cook the turkey, onion, red pepper and garlic over medium heat until meat is no longer pink and vegetables are tender; drain. Stir in the chili powder, cumin and cinnamon; cook 2 minutes longer.

Add the sweet potatoes, black beans, tomatoes, zucchini, chipotle pepper, adobo sauce, bay leaf, oregano, salt, pepper and 1 1/2 cups chicken stock or water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Stir in corn and quinoa; heat through. Discard bay leaf; stir in cilantro. 

Nutritional Facts 1 cup equals 264 calories, 5 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 20 mg cholesterol, 514 mg sodium, 43 g carbohydrate, 9 g fiber, 15 g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 2 starch, 2 lean meat, 2 vegetable.