Datil Jerk White Chili. It’s what’s for dinner. Ok. So it’s not really “white.” But it’s made with white cannellini beans and there are no tomatoes. And it’s really good. I made cornbread to go with it, but forgot to take pictures of the cornbread with the chili. By the time I remembered, the cornbread was all gone – oops.
Do you ever have one of those days where you just don’t have a clue what to make for dinner? Well, I was having one of those days. It had to be something hearty, something spicy, and definitely something easy. Have you ever opened the freezer or refrigerator and stared into space while you try to wrap your head around what to fix, using only ingredients you have on hand? Going to the grocery store is out of the question. You’re not leaving the house. No how. No way.
I usually plan ahead, but there are days when I change my mind, or get so caught up in something that the time just gets away from me. Today was one of those days. Nothing sounded good. My well planned menu just wasn’t “right.”
The Datil Jerk practically jumped off the shelf and into my hand. OK. Datil Jerk, what? My eyes landed on a can of cannellini beans, and ideas started flying through my head. I knew I had some ground turkey and an onion. Chili. That’s it. What else do I need? I have the cannellini beans, garlic, chicken broth and green chilis. I got this. Forget soup. The chili is on!
I bought an instant pot right before Christmas this past year. I had to do something, as I dropped the insert to my large crock pot and broke it into several pieces, along with taking several chunks out of my kitchen floor. After looking at the options, I bought the large Crock-Pot 8-in-1 Multi-Use Express Crock Programmable Slow Cooker, Pressure Cooker, Sauté, and Steamer. (Just so you know, I am not getting any endorsements from the Crock-Pot company.) The one-touch settings are easy and convenient to use. It has a delay timer that I haven’t used yet but will most likely come in handy later on. The steaming rack works well for vegetables like asparagus, broccoli and carrots. I’ve used it several times, and the veggies came out perfect every time.
I love that I was able to brown the ground meat along with the onion and garlic, before switching settings to add the rest of the ingredients. The pressure setting made quick work of the chili, but I could have put it on simmer or even used the slow cooker function if I’d had more time.
Sometimes, I make this chili with shredded chicken instead of the ground turkey. Just pre-cook your chicken and remove the meat from the bones. Or for an even easier way, buy a rotisserie chicken at your local grocery store. Using 2 forks, shred the chicken. Follow the recipe below, skipping step 4 since your meat is already cooked. Add the shredded chicken to the cooked onion, bell pepper and garlic, and continue with step 5 of the recipe. You certainly can’t go wrong either way. Just remember to use good quality, free range/organic chicken to get the best taste and quality.
Fun Facts: Why do you need to rinse and drain canned beans?
The murky liquid in a can of beans is mostly starch and salt. You definitely don’t need any extra starch, salt, or mushy liquid in your recipe.
Even “low-sodium” beans have extra salt. You can rinse away 1/3 to 1/2 of the salt by running fresh cold water over the beans before using them.
If you need the liquid in your recipe, you can always add the liquid of your choice: broth, water, wine, etc. to make up for the lost fluid that’s drained off the beans. And you get to control exactly what goes into your recipe.
Some beans have a “metallic” taste from the can they are stored in. You most certainly want to get rid of any unwanted or unpleasant flavor.
Cannellini Bean Nutrition Information:
1 serving of cannellini beans, approximately 1/2 cup cooked, contains about 90 calories, 19 grams of carbohydrates, 7 grams of protein, 6 grams of fiber, 80 mg of calcium, and 270 mg of potassium.
Cannellini beans are a significant source of antioxidants which are good for a healthy heart and can help protect your eyesight.
The amylase inhibitor in cannellini beans helps reduce blood sugar levels, and regulates disaccharides, which are enzymes that break down into sugar in the body.
That same amylase inhibitor can assist with weight loss, as it reduces the absorption of carbohydrates in your body by blocking the enzymes responsible for allowing your body to digest carbs,
Cannellini beans are an important part of a high fiber diet, which has been shown to decrease certain chronic diseases such as diabetes, coronary heart disease and cancer.
Eating beans like cannellini, can help decrease you LDL (bad cholesterol) levels.
Datil Jerk White Turkey Chili
Serves: 8 – 10
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: Approximately 30 minutes with the pressure cooker or about 1 1/2 hours – if cooking on top of the stove.
This is actually better the next day, if you can wait that long to eat it. It will last, well covered, in the refrigerator for 3-4 days or approximately 3 months in the freezer. I love this served with cornbread, hot and buttery, baked in my grandmother’s old cast iron skillet.
Stove-Top Cooking Method:
Using a heavy Dutch oven or large cooking pot, heat the tablespoon of oil on med-high heat until shimmering. About 1 minute.
Add the onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring frequently until the onion is translucent and the bell pepper begins to soften. About 3-4 minutes.
Next, add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Add in the ground turkey. Brown the meat, breaking it up with a large spoon as it cooks. Cook meat until no longer pink. About 5-7 minutes.
Any way you cook this, your kitchen will be full of fragrant spiciness from the Datil Jerk which is loaded with Jamaican allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, smoked paprika, onion, garlic, and of course datil pepper.