Sunday, December 20, 2009

Thai chili

This is what happens to non-recipe-using, non-shopping-list-using cooks...bad planning but a good result.

I had bought 2 packages of chicken thighs, planning on making the white chili for my mom. She loved it at my house and I thought I'd give it to her to take home for after her heart surgery.  I got home and realized that I had no white beans, dried or canned, and couldn't make the chili. As it turns out chili for mom was a bad idea in the first place as she had a horrible stomach virus two days before and then obviously had surgery so she was eating things like toast and jam not beans and peppers.

A couple days later I figured I should deal with the chicken. So I put one batch in the freezer and browned the other batch, with some salt, cinnamon and nutmeg, based on cinnamon being a superfood...(I eat all those foods regularly by the way except sardines and maybe turmeric)

Anyway, I was going to freeze the chicken cooked but I decided to simmer the chicken in coconut milk for a while just because. Then I decided to throw some other things in the pot. I had some leftover roasted squash, which my Filipino nanny had once told me to simmer in coconut milk so that went in. I had just sauteed peppers and onions to have on hand during the week so those went in..then I decided I would call it Thai chili and threw in a can of black beans. I tasted it. It needed something bright, in went a half a can of tomato paste. Still not bright enough...I remembered my tube of minced ginger from the fridge, and a squeeze went in. At this point how could I not add Thai chili paste? A bit of that went in as well-perhaps a bit too much actually.

OK - enough ingredients. A bit more simmering and we were done. Very good! I would have preferred a better chicken/squash/bean ratio (I prefer a 1-1-1 for meat/bean/veggie ratio in chili), but I only had one can of black beans and about 1.5 cups squash. If I make this again I'll actually plan and make sure to have the right ingredients on-hand.

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