May 26, 2014

Turkey Green Pepper Chili with Masa Dumplings

For some reason that's never been explained to me DP is constantly suggesting chili when I ask him what he wants for dinner.  I guess when I think about it it doesn't need much explaining other than chili is a delicious thing to eat.  However, it does leave me in the position of needing to come up with different ways of making chili, which I'm all too happy to be tasked to do.

So on such an occasion of a chili suggestion I decided that I'd made this dish often enough to not need a recipe for the base of it.  That I could wing no problem but what I did need was a clever pièce de résistance.  So having a huge bag of masa in the cupboard from a recent tortilla making spree I went in search of a masa related idea.  I had heard of adding masa to chili before to thicken it up but making a masa dumpling was so much more interesting and happened to thicken the chili at the same time.  It was certainly a win-win.  I also used turkey instead of beef to lighten the caloric intake.  Add in some veggies, beans and tomatoes and you're on your way to a great chili night.  I hope it's one of many for you just as it is for us.

Turkey Green Pepper Chili with Masa Dumplings
chili improvised. masa dumplings from here

  • 1 lb. ground turkey (or any other ground meat you fancy)
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 2 tblsp. olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, de-seeded and minced
  • 2 (15 oz.) cans of cooked black beans, rinsed
  • 1 (15 oz.) can of pinto beans, rinsed
  • 1 (28.5 oz.) can of diced tomatoes with juices
  • 1 (15 oz.) can of roasted tomatoes with juices
  • 1 tblsp. cumin
  • 1 tblsp. ground ancho chili powder
  • water
  • salt and pepper
  • cilantro for garnish (optional)
  • 3/4 cup masa
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk

Heat olive oil in large dutch oven over medium heat.  Add chopped onion and saute until translucent.  Add garlic, bell pepper and jalapeno and saute until bell pepper is soft.  Add turkey and break up into small pieces with spoon until most of the pink is cooked out of the meat.  Add cumin, chili powder and S&P until fragrant.  Add black beans, pinto beans, diced and roasted tomatoes and cover with just enough water that all veggies and beans are submerged.  Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer until soup thickens just slightly.  Check seasonings and adjust if necessary. 

While that simmers make the masa dumplings.  In large bowl combine masa, flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.  Add butter and work into flour mixture with a pastry cutter (or fork) until butter resembles corn meal with a few large chunks.  Stir in buttermilk just to combine.

Add dumplings by the tablespoon to the simmering soup.  Cover with a lid and let simmer for 10 minutes.  Serve soup with a dumpling or two in each bowl and garnished with cilantro.  I also slipped in a few avocado chunks and some cotija cheese I had on hand for good measure.  Enjoy!

2014-05-19 20.54.11

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