chili is one of the ultimate winter comfort foods – hearty and spicy, whether you choose a majorly meaty version or a bean-heavy vegetarian one, it will quickly warm you up from the inside out.
this recipe falls somewhere between the two usual extremes. there is meat (leftover roast turkey i had stashed in the freezer from the holidays), but this dish is also loaded with three different types of fiber-rich beans and sweet butternut squash, so you definitely get a good dose of veggies, too.
10-12 dried red chilies: i used a mix of guajillo, tien tsin (a pepper commonly used in chinese cuisine), and chile de arbol, but you can feel free to use whatever varieties or blend you prefer.
3 cloves garlic
1 ¼ cups dried peruano beans*
1 ¼ cups dried red kidney beans
⅔ cup dried black beans
About ½ one large butternut squash, peeled seeded, and cut into ½-inch dice (2 ½ cups total)
2 large stalks celery, cut in half lengthwise, then thinly sliced horizontally (1 cup total)
½ large sweet onion, minced (1 cup total)
1 ⅓ cups diced tomatoes
3 cups chicken or turkey stock
4 cups water
3 cups shredded or chopped roast turkey meat
salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon worchestershire sauce
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon ground aleppo pepper
½ teaspoon ground cayenne
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon celery seed
½ teaspoon ground allspice
2 green onions, thinly sliced, for garnish
sour cream, for garnish (optional)
how to do it:
1. first, rehydrate the chilies: soak chilies in 12 fluid ounces of warm water for 20-30 minutes. once softened, put the chilies, soaking liquid, and garlic cloves into a blender and process until smooth.
2. put the chile mixture and all other ingredients (except the last two) into the slow cooker. cook on high for about 6 hours, or until all beans are soft and tender and liquid has been partially absorbed and thickened.
3. spoon into bowls and serve with sour cream and green onions, if desired.
*note: if you can't find peruanos at your local market, you can certainly substitute another bean of your choice here, like pintos or great northern white beans.