Let’s go Giants!!!!
I’ll admit I came to professional sports fandom a bit late in my life and for some reason, it’s come with a heaping helping of superstition. I discovered well into the playoffs this year that I cannot watch the game if I want the San Francisco Giants to win. Believe me, I realize how ridiculous that sounds, but so far it’s working for me (and them), so far be it for me to mess with a streak. When the Giants won the World Series in 2010, we made this chicken chili that I discovered via The Bitten Word for one of the games (back during a season when I could actually watch). With game one being hosted in The City tonight and traffic on the Bay Bridge unexpectedly light as I was returning from a meeting in Walnut Creek, I found myself at Safeway with time to spare, so it seemed only right that I should make it again.
If you visit The Bitten Word post about this recipe, you’ll see that Zach and Clay have added an update, which is really more of a warning. They mention that when they originally posted the recipe, a number of people commented that they had included two CANS of chipotle chilies in the recipe as opposed to the two CANNED chipotle chiles the recipe calls for. While Brian, Monica and I cleansed our souls with hellfire and brimstone that I was too embarrassed to mention in the comments section of The Bitten Word, let me just say that this is a warning that should be heeded, unless you’re looking to find religion or change the one you already have. Just thinking about it makes my head sweat.
Because we live in San Francisco and have an innate penchant for shamelessly promoting everything good about our City, we, of course, serve this delicious chili in sourdough bread bowls. They’re easy to hollow out: you just cut a hole in the top and start digging (make sure to save the remnants and coerce them into a delicious bread pudding later in the week). Then, just for good measure, we cover the top of the bread bowls with cheddar cheese and put them under the broiler until we have a browned, scrumptious deliciousness that works a witchy pre-Halloween magic powerful enough to win World Series games.
Total time: 50 minutes
• 10 plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise
• 1 jalapeno chile, halved (seeded if desired)
• 1 white onion, peeled and halved
• 4 garlic cloves, peeled
• 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
• 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
• 1/4 cup chili powder
• 2 canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, finely chopped (see note above)
• 1 3/4 cups homemade or store-bought low-sodium chicken stock
• 1 can (15 ounces) kidney beans, drained
1. Preheat broiler, with rack 3 inches from heat source. Arrange tomatoes, jalapeno, onion, and garlic, cut side down, on a rimmed baking sheet. Broil until starting to char, about 5 minutes. Pulse tomatoes and jalapeno in a blender or a food processor until chunky. Chop onion and mince garlic.
2. Heat a large heavy skillet (preferably enamel cast-iron) over medium-high heat. Add oil. Working in batches, brown chicken in a single layer, allowing to sear before stirring, 5 to 6 minutes; transfer to a plate.
3. Reduce heat to medium. Add onion and garlic to skillet. Cook until soft and golden, about 8 minutes. Add chili powder and 2 teaspoons salt. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in chipotles, and add chicken. Raise heat to high. Add tomato-jalapeno mixture. Cook, scraping up browned bits, until fully incorporated, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in stock; simmer for 20 minutes. Add beans; simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with desired toppings.