Chicken Chili with Cornbread Croutons

November 13, 2010


This chili is smoky and spicy. It comes together in a little less than an hour, but it tastes like it took all day to cook. The tomatoes, jalapeno, onion, and garlic are charred under the broiler before being added to the stew.

And it has croutons made of CORNBREAD. (This marks the first time in my life I have been excited about a crouton).

Don’t even get me started (can I hear it from the sistas) on how brilliant Lucinda Scala Quinn was to do that to store bought cornbread. This is my favorite chili or, come to think of it, soup/stew of all time.

And if you make it, it will probably make you all googly eyed too.

More soups and stews: Quick Pho Ga (Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup), Roasted Tomato and Garlic Soup, Butternut Squash and Ginger Soup

What I’m Reading:

CHICKEN CHILI (only slightly adapted from Lucinda Scala Quinn as published in Martha Stewart Living, October 2010)

Do beware that this chili is SPICY. I’m saying that and I love spicy food. Next time, I’d seed the jalapeno before cooking. My only change was to add a mix of white and dark meat, based on my preference for a mix of meats.

Keeps in the fridge for a week or the freezer for a month

Serves 4-6

Ingredients for Chicken Chili

  • 10 plum tomatoes or tomatoes on the vine, halved lengthwise
  • 1 jalapeno chile, halved (seeded if desired)
  • 1 white onion, peeled and halved
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • Salt
  • 2 canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, finely chopped
  • 1 3/4 cups homemade or store-bought low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1 can (15 ounces) kidney beans, drained
  • Desired toppings (I like avocado mashed with a little lemon to stop it from going brown and cilantro

Ingredients for Cornbread Croutons

  • Cornbread or Corn Muffins (I just used a Jiffy Mix)
  • Olive oil
  • Salt

Recipe for Chicken Chili

  1. Preheat broiler, with rack 3 inches from heat source. Arrange tomatoes, jalapeno, onion, and garlic, cut side down, on a rimmed baking sheet. Broil until starting to char, about 5 minutes. Pulse tomatoes and jalapeno in a blender or a food processor until chunky. Chop onion and mince garlic.
  2. Heat a large heavy skillet (preferably enamel cast-iron) over medium-high heat. Add oil. Working in batches, brown chicken in a single layer, allowing to sear before stirring, 5 to 6 minutes; transfer to a plate.
  3. Reduce heat to medium. Add onion and garlic to skillet. Cook until soft and golden, about 8 minutes. Add chili powder and 2 teaspoons salt. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in chipotles, and add chicken. Raise heat to high. Add tomato-jalapeno mixture. Cook, scraping up browned bits, until fully incorporated, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in stock; simmer for 20 minutes. Add beans; simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with Corn Muffin Croutons and other desired toppings.

Recipe for Cornbread Croutons

  1. Cut corn muffins or corn bread into 3/4-inch cubes; toss with olive oil and salt.
  2. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit until golden, about 20 minutes.


One Response to “Chicken Chili with Cornbread Croutons”

  1. Amy Says:

    I think we have a winner! I’m going to try this. The cornbread croutons are brilliant!


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