All content copyright Katrina Hall 2008 through 2018

Sunday, January 10, 2010

winter means Harpoon chili time!

It's time for the chili. The snow is deep, the thermometer low, and I'm craving a pot of Harpoon Chili. Heady clouds of cumin, garlic, and chili powder waft along with an undertone of nutmeg-scented Harpoon Winter Warmer ale. Since it's a seasonal ale, I grab a 6-pack in November, when it's on the shelves, and hide it until the chili day announces itself.

The only two ales I know that make this chili zing are Harpoon Winter Warmer, and Sam Adams regular ale. I tried a Harpoon IPA once, and it was bitter, so be forewarned. If you use the Sam Adams, add 1/4 t. nutmeg. You can also use leftover steak instead of poached chicken, and whatever your favorite choice of beans is. I like black beans with a few kidney beans.

The original recipe came from a book called Recipes from the Night Kitchen, but, as usual, I've tinkered around with it over the years , as I hope you will, to make a mouth-watering winter chili you crave. And of course, it tastes even better the next day! After one night in the fridge, the chili darkens as the chili powder seeps deeply into it ( see top photo). Top with cheddar and sour cream for an even tastier bowl - but it's heavenly just on its own.

To Make:

You'll need a large, heavy bottomed stock pot for this, with a lid

2 large onions, chopped

2 T. olive or canola oil

1 stalk celery, chopped

6 cloves of garlic, minced

2 t. chili powder

1/2 t or more red pepper flakes

1 1/2 T. cumin

1 red pepper, washed, trimmed, roughly chopped

1 green pepper, washed, trimmed, roughly chopped

1 zucchini, washed, quartered lengthwise, and sliced into 1" pieces

3 15.5 oz. cans black beans, drained

1 15.5 oz. can dark red kidney beans, drained

2 bottles Harpoon Winter Warmer ale

3-4 cups chicken stock

1 20 oz. can of whole plum tomatoes, with juice,cut up

1 T. oregano

1 t. thyme

The poached chicken:

3 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, poached for 7 minutes in water, then set aside with a lid on for ten minutes. Remove when needed and dice.

The finish:

salt and pepper as needed

2 T. unsalted butter

1 t. chili powder

1 T. cumin

3 T. minced parsley

The diced chicken or leftover beef

Heat the oil and add the garlic, onions, and spices and cook for 10 minutes on medium low, with a lid on.

Add the zucchini, celery, tomatoes, beans, Harpoon ale, chicken stock, and tomatoes and red and green peppers.

Add the oregano and thyme and stir.

Cook on medium for at least an hour, checking to make sure it's not scorching, and stirring every now and then. (you can poach the chicken while waiting, then dice once cooled)

At this point, you'll be ravenous - but hold off! The final touch:

Taste before seasoning, then add the finish seasonings - the butter, chili powder, cumin, parsley, and cubes of chicken or beef, and the salt and pepper.

Serve as is, or with crusty bread, or on top of rice. Enjoy!


What I'm reading:

Sing Them Home by Stephanie Kallos


Barb said...

Greetings, Ms. Katrina! I'm not familiar with the Harpoon Ale brand (is it local to you?), but it looks quite festive. Your chili looks delicious and tummy-warming on these cold winter days.

I'm completely enjoying your 365 Project photos - beautiful!

katrina said...

Greetings right back to you, Barb! Alas, both Sam Adams and Harpoon are Boston ( and in Harpoon's case, also Vermont) based. I have no idea what full-bodied ales exist beyond this little circle. Glad you enjoyed - and EEK! Thanks for reminding me about 365 - I hope I have a picture!

Janis said...

Great timing for a splendid chili recipe! Oddly enough, I've never put ale in my chili before. Since all we had on hand was Magic Hat Not Quite Pale Ale (from Vermont), I went with that for my vegetarian version of this warming and tasty dish. The results were great. Thank you!

katrina said...

That's great Janis! Glad you enjoyed it - and I seem to remember Magic Hat as being quite deadly. I had to remind myself just ONE was just enough:) Did you put nutmeg in?
I might taste-test Magic Hat next time I make the chili - though that won't help our California and Colorado friends. Thanks!

Lindsey Frances said...

This is a definite recipe to make. I've got a lot of Blue Moon Winter Ale. I wonder how it would work in the recipe.

katrina said...

Hi Lindsey Frances: I wish I could tell you if Blue Moon is a good chili ale but I don't know. What you want is a full-bodied, smooth ale, with a hint of nutmeg ( and the Harpoon label also mentions cinnamon, though I never noticed that on tasting). Nothing too bitter, or your chili will also be bitter - ugh!

Michelle said...

"Harpoon Winter Warmer ale" this is one ale I'd buy just because of the name!

katrina said...

And one ale that lives up to its name, Michelle!