For this week's Sunday Night Special, we're making turkey bacon chili.
You heard me.
Chili. With turkey. And BACON!
And it's so ridiculously easy to make. Big thanks to Nicholas Kolnik for the recipe!
1 lb ground turkey
1 package sliced bacon (you'll need about 10 slices)
3 cans stewed tomatoes (or save yourself some change and get one jumbo can and one reg. can, like I did)
1 can chili beans
1 can black beans
1 can kidney beans
For chili seasoning, you can either go with a regular packet of chili seasoning - super easy - or do it free style. I like to add a tsp of brown sugar, a few shakes of Worcestershire sauce, a tsp of chili powder, and another tsp of salt and pepper, and that's it. I don't like my chili to be too spicy, mainly because I'm a wuss. If you do, I would suggest adding in a pinch of Cayenne red pepper.
Brown your turkey, turkey! Then cook your bacon...you're going to crock pot this, so you really only need to lightly cook the bacon, since the objective is to add bacony-smokey flavor to the chili, and the bacon's going to go soft in the crockpot, anyway, so don't knock yourself out trying to cook it to crisp perfection (unless, of course, you have some bacon left over. Then I invite you to do so and eat it as a snack to tide you over until the chili's ready).
Combine all ingredientses into your crockpot.
Turn it on high.
Set your timer for 3 hours.
And try really, really hard not to attack the chili before it's done. Maybe go work out at the YMCA for a little bit. Catch a movie. Just get yourself out of the house so you're not torturing both you and your family while this cooks.
This photo taught me that there's really no way for an amateur to take a photo of chili and have it NOT look disgusting.
But just know that the chili itself? Not disgusting. SO GOOD! And easy! And healthy, if you're really into meat and beans and stewed tomatoes.
You can, of course, add in and modify ingredientses, because it's chili and that's what makes chili great. Nicholas' original recipe called for corn, but as everyone who knows me knows, I hate corn. So I left it out, but you can put that in. I think some green peppers might be good in this thing, too. Perhaps mushrooms? I don't know...I don't really go looking to *add* in vegetables that often, so I'm probably the wrong person to ask.
Anyway! This chili pairs really well with red wine. I like Chateau St. Michelle's Cabernet with this one, but a Pinot Noir would probably be really great, too. And for your viewing pleasure, I would suggest the first season of Downton Abbey. Because while the show seemed like it would be right up your ally, the series pilot bored you to tears - because you thought this was going to be about English nobility and rich girls and proper English romances with some servant drama going on downstairs, right, and not just all about some droll limping butler who seems to be hiding a secret, the truth about which you could really care less about discovering - and you're kind of afraid to give it another go, but your friends all won't shut up about it and you're kind of in the mood for something English. Fear not! This chili is anything BUT boring, so it and the wine you've paired it with will balance quite nicely with an incredibly slow-moving English Masterpiece TV series.
*After seasons of watching Theresa from Real Housewives of New Jersey pronounce "ingredients" as "ingredientses", I've taken to doing it myself now. It's one of those things that you do at first as a joke, and then you realize that you've been doing it for so long that you're just doing it for real now. So there's that.