Easy Chicken Chili with Sweet Potato + Lime
Easy Chicken Chili Time
New Year's Day looms. Ah, the annual parades. The glut of bowl games. The feast of football. Pigskin is king. Tight ends are tightening. Quarterbacks are quarterbacking. And kickers are praying to the football gods they won't be called in for a chip-shot, with 6 seconds to spare in the final quarter. Do I sound like I know what I am talking about? I don't. I just overheard some manly sporty banter over gluten-free tuna melts. To which I smiled politely.
And reached for a pickle.
Even after watching every episode of Friday Night Lights, I still don't understand a down. Football is a mystery. Back fields in motion. Penalties! Off sides. Snap. Blitz. Gotta love the lingo. It's a language alluringly foreign to me. Like math.
Or for some, perhaps it's akin to say... abstract expressionism.
Visual chaos executed in angles and arcs and bursts of focus, drive and energy.
Thing is, I get the practiced dance of propulsion. Designing motion from multiple points of view. I get it. In my bones. This is my territory. You're talkin' my language. Value verses tone. Light bumping up against dark. Sharp contrast dissolving into blur. I appreciate the power of practice and intention. Negative space divided by a perfect spiral.
Think of the interplay of icing thick paint and oceanic viscosity. The quickening beauty of a layered surface, vibrating with complementary colors. Transparency and opacity. Cool against warm. Unprimed and primed. Lost and found edges. The seduction of action's evidence. The painter's hand. Rugged tooth and clean, smooth paper.
Though it's not all yin yang, a wrestle of opposites.
As in football- and life- painting is a focus of expression, sometimes true and authentic, and sometimes disappointingly off the mark.
Like a short field goal.
We try. We sometimes miss. But what matters is- we make the effort. And that is all we can do. We kick the ball. We brush wet paint. We string words into a lyric. We stitch a quilt. We photograph a child's curiosity. We make chili.
We get a winner.
And if not?
Tomorrow is another day.
This bright and beautiful chili is fresh and light- and perfect for a New Year's Day celebration (beans invite good luck for the New Year, so they say).
Serve with my Gluten-Free Skillet Cornbread with Green Chiles or Pueblo Bread.
Gluten-Free Chicken Chili Recipe with White Beans, Sweet Potato and Lime
This easy, fabulous chicken chili gets its heat from hot red pepper flakes and ginger. It keeps its cool with sweet potato, fresh squeezed lime juice, and citrusy cilantro. Roasting the chicken (bone in) and adding it in at the end of cooking time, gives this white bean chicken chili a superior texture and flavor.
4 bone-in free-range organic chicken breasts
Drizzle of olive oil
Sea salt and pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium red onion, peeled, diced
2-4 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
1 large or 2 smaller sweet potatoes, peeled, diced
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon GF chili powder
2 teaspoons dried oregano
Hot red pepper flakes, season to taste
3/4 cup chopped roasted green chiles or tomatillo salsa verde
2 15-oz cans organic cannellini or Great Northern white beans, rinsed, drained
2 cups light organic chicken broth
Squeeze of fresh lime juice
Fresh chopped parsley
Fresh chopped cilantro
Fresh lime slices
Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Rinse the chicken breasts and pat dry. Remove the skin, if you like (we do). Place meaty side up in a baking pan. Drizzle with olive oil and season with sea salt and pepper. Sprinkle with dried herbs, if you like (we used thyme and oregano).
Turn the chicken over, bone side up, drizzle again, and season.
Roast the chicken bone side up for roughly 30 to 35 minutes until done and no longer pink inside (check with a meat thermometer for an internal temp of 165º to 170º).
Tip: Roasting bone-in, with the rib side up, will give you moist, tender, juicy chicken.
In the meantime, start your pot of chili.
Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a large soup pot over medium high heat. Add the red onion and stir for a minute. Add the garlic and sweet potatoes. Add ginger, cumin, oregano and hot pepper flakes. Stir to coat. Add in the roasted green chiles, white beans and chicken broth. Cover and bring to a light simmer.
When the chicken is done, let it cool off slightly, until it is cool enough to handle. Cut the meat off the rib bones, or tear off pieces by hand. Add the chicken pieces to the pot and stir gently to warm through.
Squeeze in some fresh lime juice to brighten flavors. Stir gently. Taste test for seasoning adjustments. Does it need more heat? More salt? If it has thickened too much, add a touch of broth to thin.
Serve with lime wedges and a sprinkle of fresh chopped parsley and cilantro.
More gluten-free chili + soup recipes from fellow food bloggers:
Andrea Meyers cooks up Roasted Tomatillo Soup with Chicken
Jeanette's Healthy Living simmers up Cuban Black Bean Soup
Sass & Veracity gets her game on with Spicy Game Day Chili Beans