Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Feelin' Hot, Hot, Hot*

Begin Tangent: My Junior (or was it Senior?) year of High School, my dance company's competition pom routine was set to a chirpy mash-up of "Feelin' Hot, Hot, Hot" and some other appropriately Latin Fiesta themed tune (why can I not remember that...) (this is going to bother me...) (but at least I can still do the Fight Song).  Incidentally, our costumes - comprised of hot pink spandex dance pants, a striped spandex crop top with a single-arm ruffle, and some sort of cringe-worthy headdress (Cuban Pete would be so proud) (I really need to scan in some of these photos) (oh my goodness, stop it with the parentheticals, child) matched my new Meal Planner (thanks Jessica!) (sorry, last one). I have absolutely no clue why I made this connection and/or why I found it content-worthy.  Let's just chalk it up to "part of my charm" and move on with our lives, shall we?  End Tangent. 

So, yay, Meal Planning!  It's going swimmingly!  I'm loving hunting down new recipes and having more time freed up in my evenings, and, interestingly, Evs loves having a weekly menu to consult!  On Monday (unable to plan on Sunday because of traveling malfunctions), he even inquired if there was going to be a new one posted on the fridge when he got home... which I thought was pretty adorable, but I'll spare you my domestic cheese-fest.  

One of my planned recipes last week was a turkey chili from Williams-Sonoma's One Pot Meals cookbook.  

I know, I know... chili in August?  In Texas, no less?  

Yeah, whatever.  I'm sick of this weather.  I'm sick of being hot.  I'm sick of complaining about being hot.  I'm sick of summer clothes (except for you, white jeans - never leave me!).  I'm sick of sweating in my own home because punching the thermostat above 78 will cause us to go bankrupt.   

I miss college football, and sweaters, and leggings, and riding boots, and pumpkin spice lattes, and stews and soups.  

So I took matters into my own hands.  Because while I can't eat my chili in a sweaterdress whilst watching the Longhorns play after a trip to Starbucks for my favorite fall beverage, I can eat my chili in a wife beater with wet hair whilst sitting in front of a box fan watching Flipping Out.  

And maybe if I eat enough chili, Fall will arrive by the sheer force of chili powder and my will. 

Anyhoo, however seasonally inappropriate, Evs said this was the best chili he's ever eaten.  While I might not go that far (my mom's is pretty damn stellar), it is the best turkey chili I've ever eaten... Plus my corn muffin experiment turned out a-oh-kay... So since it's Officially Hatch Chile Season, I thought I'd give them both a shout-out...

Hatch Chile Turkey Chili (modified from One Pot Meals' Poblano Turkey Chili)

  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 lbs ground turkey (I used one pound of lean and one pound of super lean)
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 3 Hatch chiles - veins and seeds removed; diced 
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 14.5 oz can of crushed Roma tomatoes 
  • 4-5 T. chili powder 
  • 1 c. chicken broth (or veggie)
  • Salt / Pepper to taste 
  • Choose either: (a) your dignity, or (b) kitchen gloves
In a Dutch Oven, saute the onions and chiles in the olive oil over medium heat until softened, about 4 minutes.  Add turkey and cook, stirring to break up any clumps, until the meat browns - about 8 minutes.  Liberally salt and pepper meat mixture. 

Note:  I'll pause here for a cautionary tale.  Whilst slicing these peppers, they omitted what I can only describe as an Invisible Mist of Death.  Which subsequently settled on my hands and in my nostrils.  I've never been sprayed in the face with pepper spray, but I imagine it would feel something like what I experienced about 45 seconds after completing my dice cuts.  I finally stopped trying to frantically wash my face in the kitchen sink and stripped down for a proper shower.  When that didn't help, I consulted Google, who led me to countless cooking message boards discussing home remedies for pepper burns.  Lots of assholes suggested wearing gloves (Thanks.  If I had a Magic DeLorean, that just might be the ticket!), but "vodka" and "milk" were also popular.  Starting with the non-offensive liquid, I swabbed my nose with Grey Goose and then took a shot just for the hell of it.  Not all that helpful.  So I bucked up and dunked my sniffer in 2%.  If you know me and my oddities, you know I have nothing for disdain for many non-cheese, white, creamy liquids / sauces / spreads (hold the sexy-time jokes, por favor), so this was big for me.  

It did take the sting away after a few minutes.  So, there you go.  Milk: It Does an Idiot Good. 

Now, I've cooked with Hatch chiles before.  I've also cooked with jalapeños, poblanos, and habaneros.  I've never had this problem - at least nowhere near this severe.  And, ironically, the end results of my culinary endeavors didn't even have that much kick to them.  Perhaps all the heat was released in the Invisible Mist of Death.  Who knows.  But I will be using gloves next time I play around with these suckers.  {And maybe a gas mask and a Hazmat suit.}  Out of an abundance of caution, I suggest you do the same. 

Back to the chili... 

Add the garlic and chili powder and cook, stirring frequently for 1 minute.  Add tomatoes, beans, and broth.  Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook uncovered until thickened, about 10 minutes.  

Laddle into bowls, grab a Hatch Chile Cheese Corn Muffin and enjoy in front of college football Jeff Lewis. Makes about 6 servings.  

Hatch Chile Cheese Corn Muffins

  • 2 c. cornbread mix, such as Arrowhead Mills
  • 1 egg
  • 3 T. sunflower oil
  • 1 T. honey
  • 1 + 1/3 c. water
  • 2 c. shredded cheese - I used aged, white Seaside Cheddar 
  • 1 Hatch chile - veins and seeds removed; diced
  • 1 can of corn - drain and rinse (or scrape the kernels off 2 ears)
Mix together liquid ingredients.  Then fold in the cornbread mix and the cheese.  Meanwhile, saute the chile (please note the note above) and corn in a tad of olive oil on medium heat until fragrant - about 4-5 minutes.   Add to the cornbread mixture.  Spoon into greased muffin tin - these do not rise very much, so go hog wild and fill 'em up almost to the top!   Bake at 375 for about 15-20 minutes. 

Makes 12 - 15 muffins

What are you excited to cook for Fall?


  1. soups!!! if it's below 95 degrees in dallas, i permit myself to make it! on a side note, have you tried the hatch/cheddar cheese bread at Central Market...makes THE BEST sandwiches ever!

  2. It was to Fiesta! And Feelin Hot, Hot, Hot
    Just thought I would help you remember.

  3. And Gloria Estefan ... Conga? Is that right?

  4. YES! I knew Colleen or Allison would help a sister out!

  5. Gracious this sounds good. It's hot, hot, hot here in Beaufort, and I am so ready for fall. This will be a must-make when it cools off a bit!

  6. Mmmm. I love cornbread. I found some great recipes for it last fall including a honey/sage cornbread. I almost orgasmed when I ate it. ;)

  7. I am sooooo excited for chili and cornbread. It is my fall/winter staple meal! I seriously make it once a week and NEVER get sick of it. Nom nom.

  8. Nick has been craving chili, and I keep telling him it's too hot. But if you can make it in Texas, I suppose I can make it in Pennsylvania! So looking forward to fall and all of the soups and stews that come along with it.

  9. I need that meal planner. Did you really get the last one?

  10. I love that you posted this! I had some chili on Friday and have been craving it ever since. Seriously, the weekend, football, and chili. I.can't.wait.

  11. Hah, this brought back memories of my own dance competition number, Soul Cha Cha! Oh, I still remember the midrift baring, fiesta outfit fondly!
    I'm in love with the menu planner!!!!

  12. "People in the party, hot, hot, hot." I think it was sophomore year. Devil Went Down to Georgia was Junior. I remember this only because those pom outfits were the only thing that helped ease the sting of not making the team my freshman year. Wow, I just nerded out on that one...

  13. I love your meal plan it's so cute! And this chili sounds where to find hatch chiles in the middle east...i'm on a mission now!

  14. I'm a huge fan of parentheses, so I loved this post. Also, I've been saying the words "pumpkin latte" and "college football" with increasing frequency of late, so I know I'm ready!

  15. I was just going to say Conga by Gloria Estefan! But Colleen beat me to it... darn my early bedtime!

  16. Totally downloaded that menu planner! Perfect!

    That recipe looks awesome. I love chili and a big pot of homemade pasta sauce for fall/winter. Football! Starting soon! Hooray!

    Also, I totally have to find those honey/sage corn muffins copiaverborum mentioned. I have never made good cornbread!

  17. Girl, I have wiped jalapeno juice in my eye no less than 5 times in the last 5 years. And every time I scream something along the lines of "arghgggghhhhhhh WHY DON'T I WASH MY HANDS FIRST!" So I feel your pain.

    Also, I am so jealous of you. This is our first summer away from Texas (you can be jealous of me for not living in the head) and they don't have hatch chillies here. Last year Chris and I bought a box of hatch chillies. 23 pound of hatch chillies. The amount of hatch chillies we ate was a little intense!

  18. So, yesterday the internet and email was down at my office AGAIN (third time in three days), so I took a long lunch and somehow ended up at Pier 1 and somehow ended up with candles, reed diffusers and oil lamps in the following scents: "fall leaves" "creamy caramel pumpkin" and "apple orchard". I told the clerk that I was willing fall to come. Even if it is 108 outside, my house will smell like November!

    So, I totally understand the whole eating fall foods and willing fall to come because damnit, it's too flipping hot!

  19. I use that very same meal planner!! Isn't it fabulous? :)

  20. This recipe sounds great- though I'm not sure if I can find Hatch chiles where I live. I'll consider myself warned about the peppery mist. I am ridiculously excited for college football, pumpkin spice lattes, and cooking soups/chili again!

  21. I've been using Jessica's meal planning sheets for a couple of months and they are the best. I made chili this past weekend, too. I definitely believe the cooler weather will come if I will it!

  22. It is about 105* in Vegas, with severe thunderstorm warnings - so, we no longer have the luxury of "dry heat". But I am really looking forward to chili season.

    A couple years ago, I was making a big batch of salsa, chopping jalepenos, and my hands and face swelled up so bad from handling the peppers, I ended up having to get an epi shot at the hospital - so, I've learned my lesson - always wear gloves while handling peppers.

  23. Ooh, thanks for linking that meal planning download. I've been doing meal plans since June, but since I was on vacation during the month of July we stopped. Now we need to get back on it. It helped, and we all loved our meals.

    My favorite foods for fall is chili and roasts. Yum!

  24. I made beef stew last Sunday night despite it being 97 here in Florida. We ate it after a nice cool swim.

    I want fall!

  25. I should have read this warning about the potency of hatch chilies more carefully back in the day.. I cooked with hatch chilies for the first time today and I thought I was going to die it was so spicy!


happy little comments!