Tasty Turkey Chili

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Turkey Chili - Perfect for a Wintry Day!

Okay, so you have a busy schedule. Maybe you have a job, possibly you have two? Then there are those kids. Don’t forget to take the dogs out for a walk. Homework, anyone? Oh yes, save some quarters, your laundry pile now has its’ own zip code.
Time to cook? No way…
Unless you have a slow cooker, commonly known in these parts as a “crock pot.”
Nothing gourmet here. Easy to prepare, no special skill required as long as you can operate a can opener. This is the perfect recipe for the young lad or lass out on their own for the first time. It works great for the mom or dad that has to juggle cooking with all the normal demands of life like, oh you know, ballet/work/karate/work/soccer/work/football/work/after school club of your choice/work. Then there’s your boss. No stress in your life. Nope. Not a bit. Heck, this recipe will even work for you!

Don’t forget these safety tips:
Make sure the turkey is thoroughly cooked. The poultry must reach 165 degrees F. (74 degrees C.) A cooking thermometer is a wise investment and will give you piece of mind when cooking turkey.
And the biggie: Wash your hands after you touch raw turkey. Every time. Don’t handle raw turkey, then pick up a spoon or something… and then wash your hands. You’ll probably pick that spoon up later and risk a night in the emergency room.

Note: I use ground turkey for this recipe. I cook it separately with no added spices. This way, I can see the pink disappear as the bird cooks. Once everything has that odd-looking, white-ish color, I know it is time to check the temperature. Adding spices before this point might mask some raw turkey.
Now for the recipe (remember – nothing gourmet, just good)

Ingredients
2 pounds ground turkey
2 cans white beans
1 can pinto beans
1 can diced tomatoes with green bell pepper, onion and celery
6 oz. white cheddar cheese, cut into one ounce chunks
To Taste:
Tabasco Sauce – go big or go to Denny’s…
Chili Powder
Black Pepper
Water

Directions
In a large skillet, cook the ground turkey until done. (165 degrees, remember?)
Drain the grease and place the cooked turkey into a large crock pot.
Dust the turkey with chili powder and black pepper,
Add the three cans of beans and the cheese.
Add the spices to your taste. Make it as spicy or as mild as you prefer.
Now, add enough water to cover what is in the crock pot. It will reduce, no worries.
Cover the crock pot and cook on low.

8 hours later, give it a good stir. Add water if you need to but it will probably be ready to eat!

Serve with a good hearty slice of bread and a glass of red wine.

Buen Provecho, amigos!

Snowed In

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Snow smacks the Eastern Shore of Virginia

The snow started falling last night, which was technically still December 25th, so I guess we can say we did, indeed have a white Christmas on the Eastern Shore.
The good news – we have plenty of food. Leftover salmon from our Asian-Pacific themed holiday dinner (did I tell you we almost never have “normal” meals?) along with deli turkey, Havarti cheese and some nice Boule. Given that Santa gave me three bottles of wine, all is not lost.
The bad news – the main road is clear, as is the bridge leading back to Virginia Beach, but farm roads like ours are still covered with snow. I would try to traverse them tomorrow to get to work, but the farmers dig deep ditches alongside the country roads to keep people from driving into their fields. Now those trenches are filled with snow, so you won’t know that you are driving into one until…well, you get the picture.
Once I do get back to the mainland, I have a culinary plan.

Turkey Chili.

Stand by. It’ll be good. Perfect for the cold days of Winter.