Tuesday, December 18, 2012

lightened up white chicken chili

This weekend was full of parties and Christmas spirit, and I loved every minute of it.

Including, but not limited to:

Joe's fancy office party...
...complete with mashed potato bar
after-party treats I whipped up...who doesn't like peanut butter choc chip cookies at midnight?
park day with the puppy
a Christmas-y birthday party with my first pomosa!
{the pom arils made their way into my wine afterwards...yum}
We had such a great time hanging out with friends and sharing in all the festivities.
And with everything that happened Friday in Connecticut, I felt even more grateful to spend the weekend with loved ones.
I don't really like to comment when things like this happen {which, lets face it, is incredibly more often than it should} because I feel like no matter what I say, the sadness I feel can in no way come close to what the families affected are having to endure.
But I will say this...
If ya'll haven't seen the opening clip of last night's episode of The Voice, you should go watch it.
And take a moment to be grateful.
For family, friends, and life in general.
Because it's absolutely not guaranteed.
If I've learned anything from Friday, it's that.

Moving on.

I didn't spend much time in the kitchen this weekend {besides midnight ramekin cookies because...duh}, but I do have a recipe to share today!

Remember the white chicken chili I showed you Friday?

recipe slightly adapted via

Things you'll need:
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 medium-large onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 lbs raw chicken breast, cubed
1-2 tbsp chili powder {1 is perfectly fine, but I like things a little spicier so I used about 2}
4 tsp. cumin
salt, to taste
3 cans cannellini beans
3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
3/4 cup fat free evaporated milk
2 tbsp cornstarch
1/8 cup water
reduced fat shredded cheese {I used fiesta blend, but anything like cheddar, colby, monterey, etc. will work!}

In a Dutch oven or large pot, heat olive oil on low-medium heat and saute onions until tender.
{about 4 to 5 minutes}
During last minute, throw in minced garlic.

Cut chicken into small cubes and season with chili powder, cumin, and salt.

Side note: if I'm being honest, those seasoning measurements are just ballpark estimates.
It doesn't hurt to season this to taste, which is what I personally did.
I like things to be spicy and seasoned really well, but that's just me.

Push onions to one side of pot and add chicken.

Cook 5 to 6 minutes, until chicken is browned on all sides.

Stir in 2 cans of cannellini beans and 2 cups of broth.
Increase heat to medium-high and bring to simmer.
Cover and cook for about 8 minutes, until chicken is thoroughly cooked.

In the meantime, put last can of beans and last cup of broth into food processor and run until smooth.
When chili is done simmering, add bean puree and evaporated milk.
Dissolve cornstarch in water, and add to chili.
Let boil for a minute, until it thickens to desired consistency.
More cornstarch can be added if needed.

Sprinkle with cheese, cilantro {which sadly I was out of}, and a dollop of fat free sour cream.
Et voila!

This chili was absolutely delicious, and I ate it for two straight days because:
1. I love anything with Mexican seasonings, and;
2. Joe hates beans and refused to even try one...ridiculous.

Oh well.
More for me.

While this isn't a completely clean recipe, I do think this is a lighter version compared to the original recipe
Mostly because I swapped out the half & half for fat free evaporated milk, saving roughly 112 calories!
You probably won't need the cornstarch mixture if you use half & half though, since it's definitely creamier in texture.

It's all about personal preference and what you like though!

In other exciting news...
Tomorrow marks 4 whole years Joe and I have been dating.
No joke, it feels like it has literally flown by.
So if you need me tomorrow, I'll be celebrating 4 great years with the sweetest guy I know.

Hope everyone's having a great week so far!

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