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During the cold winter months, my favorite thing to cook for a warm meal is turkey chili and cornbread. This is simple to make a meal that looks good on camera and tastes quite good. The recipe I used for the chili has turned out to be the best, although without making my own changes. I double the amount of meat, as I’ve found that normally the recipe is too thin and lacks some real substance. I also use ground turkey instead of beef, as I would like to keep the meal light and healthy, without sacrificing taste or consistency. I also double the portions, as the chili keeps perfectly well in Mason Jars for a while when put in the fridge after cooking, which turns out to be a quick and delicious meal while skiing.
As for the cornbread, I prefer to make them in muffin pans instead of the classic loaf style, for ease of cooking. I usually cook two different batches- one normal cornbread muffins, and another spicy, with chunks of jalapeno in them and 1-2 slices of jalapeno on top. Keeping the batches separate makes sure everyone in my family gets what they want, as my daughter wouldn’t dare eat the spicy cornbread. Preparing it is simple and quick and is just a matter of mixing the ingredients in a glass bowl, pour into the muffin pan, and cooking for ___ minutes.
I have found that my huge selection of props has intersected with my everyday cookware- for the chili, I use a large dutch oven that I bought for a shoot, but I now have multiple due to their versatility. The Dutch Oven is good for the chili, as it ensures proper heat distribution, so the chili doesn’t stay cold near the top while burning at the bottom. As for the shoot, I like to make sure that everything I serve also looks good. Serving the chili with radishes, chives, sour cream, and cheese looks amazing on the camera and enhances the meal.
Easy Turkey Chili
- 1 1/2 tsp olive oil
- 2 lb ground turkey
- 1 yellow onion chopped
- 2 cups water
- 1 can canned crushed tomatoes 28 ounces
- 1 can canned kidney beans 16 ounces, rinsed
- 2 cloves of garlic minced
- 2 tbsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- Measure all spices into one small bowl. Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Place turkey in the cooking pot, and cook until evenly brown. Add onion, and garlic until tender.
- Add water, tomatoes, kidney beans into the pot. Mix well. Finally, add all the spices. Bring to boil, Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 30 minutes.
- Serve with cheddar cheese, chives, radishes, and sour cream.
- I prefer to use a 5.5 quart cast iron dutch oven for this recipe.