Showing posts with label Low and Slow Cooking. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Low and Slow Cooking. Show all posts

Monday, November 3, 2014

Simple Family Feasts - White Bean Chicken Chili

Yesterday got away from me.  It did.  The time changed, which always throws me for a loop.  After church, I worked on a website for a non-profit that works with orphans and then spent a few hours double checking the nearly 200 orders for the son's Boy Scout troop fundraiser.  This blog posting was ever on my mind but I never put into words.  So, for the sake of my sanity, I'll pretend this is Sunday, November 2.

My intent the last two days was to make cheeseburgers and fries.  But, as the cold settled on Nashville and the leaves created a soft carpet of color on our lawn, I have only wanted warm comforting foods like shepherd's pie and soup.  Yesterday I pulled out another old favorite at our home - White Bean Chicken Chili.    Now, I have said this before and I'll say it again, but I typically use dried beans and I though sometimes I use store bought broths, more often than not I make my own. 

If you soak 1 cup of white beans overnight, then put them into the crock-pot with the other ingredients, they will turn out perfectly as this recipe calls for  8-hours of cooking.  In addition, I purchase rotisserie chickens from Whole Foods.  The chickens cost $8 and I simply pop them into the freezer as soon as I get home.  When I am ready to use one, I pull it out and simmer it in a 5 quart dutch oven with at least 3 quarts of water for about 45 minutes with a lid on but slightly open.  Once I am finished boiling the ENTIRE chicken, I place the broth into the crock-pot.  After the m
eat cools, I pull it of and add it to the pot as well and discard of the carcass.  There is something very earthy to me in using the entire chicken.  It keeps me in mind of where my food comes from and is a great lesson to my children as they assist me in the kitchen.

In a few days I'll be adding blog postings that talk about eating organic on a budget as I am trying to get our grocery down from it's embarassingly high amount to a more managable amount since I have left my full-time job to be at home with the children once again.  In anticpation of this, I thought I would guestimate the cost of this meal which was served with tortilla chips and shredded cheese.  The entire meal with the sides was at a cost of $18.  My family of 4 ate well with three of us having two servings.  There is at least one serving remaining in a small container in the fridge for someone's lunch.  I daresay a family of 5 (or even 6) could easily eat well on this recipe, but for these purposes I'll call it at $3 per serving

Now, I would like to get this per serving cost down even lower.  I didn't have time to make the cornbread last night, so I think if I substitute cornbread or the tortilla chips and if I purchase a pack of bone-in thighs instead of the convenience of the rotisserie, I think I can do it.  Stay tuned for more on cutting our grocery bill!

Though I am looking for the savings, I am thankful for the abundance in our home.  And thus, I shall leave you with this....

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Slow Cooker White Bean Chili

March 12, 2012
I awoke this morning to see the sun rising in the horizon and said a thanks to God for allowing me to see another day.  I hopped out of bed and headed to the kitchen where 2 pounds of bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs waited for me in the fridge.  After rinsing the chicken, they went into a 5 quart dutch oven filled with water and boiled for an hour on the stove.  In addition to the chicken, I added salt, pepper and a bay leaf to the water to create a rich and healthy broth which replaces the canned or boxed broth mentioned in the chili recipe I am linking to below.
I am constantly trying to improve things here at home and getting me out of the kitchen will help tremendously.  So, I'm pulling out the crockpot and letting it do some of the work.  Here is a link to a great White Bean Chili recipe which is "what's for dinner" tonight.  As sometimes happens, we will not be sitting around together eating tonight.  I have a Board meeting and Noah has soccer and we will be going our separate ways as a family.  Actually, that's going to happen a few times this week so dinner needs to be really easy.

This is a really simple recipe and I have made some modifications.  Instead of canned broth I am using my own and instead of canned white beans I am using dried beans.  Dried beans are much cheaper, healthier (no added sodium) and do not come from a BPA lined can. 
"The aroma of good chili should generate rapture akin to a lover's kiss." - Motto of the Chili Appreciation Society International