I may not have written anything yesterday, but I sure did cook! I made a delicious lunch of okra, tomatoes, bacon, and onion (coming soon!) and was then inspired to pull out my faithful crock pot and cook some chili for dinner. I was browsing through a cooking blog site for ideas and found a terrific recipe for a chicken-based chili. The only problem was I didn’t have half the ingredients, but that didn’t stop me! No black beans? Well white beans would work! No corn? Aha, I have a can of golden hominy in the pantry, hominy is corn, isn’t it? Rats, it’s also calling for a packet of dried ranch dressing. Hey, I have some in a bottle, I’ll use that instead. Oh, and what about that package of cream cheese? Let’s see, I have a quarter package of light Neufchatel, close enough for me! Rotel tomatoes? HA! Of course I had a can of those, what Texan wouldn’t?
See, you don’t really need to follow a recipe to the tee to make a great dinner. I’m all about experimenting and basically relying on what I happen to have in the house at the time. Of course I do make a shopping list when there is an ingredient I just have to have for something in mind, but more times than not it is determined by what’s in the fridge, freezer or pantry.
White Bean and Chicken Chili
Two boneless skinless chicken breasts (I put them in frozen!)
1 can drained, rinsed white beans
1 can hominy, liquid included
1 can Rotel diced tomatoes and chiles, liquid included
2 tablespoons Ranch dressing
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Black pepper to taste
1/4 to 1 package light cream or Neufchatel cheese
Put the chicken breasts in the bottom of the crock pot. Add the rest of the ingredients except the cream cheese and stir to combine, making sure the chicken ends up at the bottom again. Put the cream cheese brick on top. Cook on low 6-8 hours, or high 3-4 hours. When done, stir to mix in the cheese. Take two forks and shred the chicken right there in the pot and stir again. Garnish with tortilla chips, cilantro, sour cream or any other condiment of choice.