Monday, September 23, 2013

Chicken Chili, Cheater Style!

Have I yet proven to you my laziness? I have it in abundance. In fact, as I type, I sit with my head cocked uncomfortably to the side to keep the sun out of my eyes rather than get up and close the curtains. This is the main reason I'm not as much of a foodie as Kirstyn. I think all she does is fabulous, but I'm quite honestly too lazy to hunt down sources of raw milk, can my own tomato products, braid ropes of garlic...

But I do make something of an effort to actually make meals at home, to for-go eating out and wasting money. Not to mention, this way I know we're we're eating things that actually came from plants and animals (the pink slime debacle from McDonald's comes to mind). Granted, it's not always organic, or non-GMO, but its better than fast food.

So tonight, we're having company, so I (probably not very wisely) decided to try out a new recipe. I hear new recipes are best tried out at potlucks so that you don't have to take home the leftovers if it's bad, but here I am, trying it out on two unsuspecting women. Anyway, it's called Crockpot Chicken Taco Chili, and so far, it looks scrumptious.

Part of me being lazy, though, is that I neglected to take pictures as I dumped ingredients out of their cans. Oops. First, I'll post the original recipe, then go back through and tell you what all I did differently. One of my downfalls is that very often, I alter recipes before trying them the first time, so when they turn out badly, I just reject them, even if the original recipe may have actually been tasty. Hopefully that won't be the case tonight...

Chicken Taco Chili
1 onion, chopped
1 can black beans
1 can kidney beans
8 oz tomato sauce
2 cans diced tomatoes with chilies
10 oz frozen corn
1 pkg taco seasoning
1 T cumin
1 T chili powder
3-4 chicken breasts
1/4 c fresh cilantro

Dump all ingredients together in crock pot, placing chicken breasts on top, cook on low for 10 hours. Half an hour before serving, shred chicken and mix in. Serve with cheese and sour cream.

What I Actually Did:
-I hate chopping onions, so I rarely have them in the house. I liberally dumped in some minced, dried onions.
-I'm fairly certain that canned beans are as short-cutty as you can get. Kirstyn, I'm sure, would have actually soaked her beans the night before.
-I buy my tomato sauce at Sam's, which means I never have the 8 oz size on hand. So I dumped in two 15 oz cans, and made up the difference by not adding any diced tomatoes. I've never been a fan of tomato chunks in my chili anyway. I did have some green chilies on hand, so I added those as well.
-As I love corn to death, I just liberally dumped it instead of measuring out ten ounces on my little kitchen scale.
-The rest I measured out, more or less. Except the cilantro. I definitely don't keep that on hand very often (the one exception is when I want to make some black bean dip), so I just squeezed in some of the cilantro paste I keep in the fridge.

Now, you know my dark side. If this keeps any of you from dining at Chez Kara in the future, I understand. I'll post again tomorrow to let you know how it turns out! For now, I'm off to scrub the bathroom and fold an epically sized pile of laundry. Happy Monday!


  1. Kara I know exactly what you mean about changing the recipe before actually trying. I tried to make a Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole... I couldnt even finish my serving of it cause the flavors were so off... it might have had something to do with the fact that I changed the cheese, amount of chicken, different seasonings, different bread crumb topping. It somehow made the chicken taste like tuna of all things and not in a good way. Sigh I dont think I will be trying that recipe again just cause its in my head now that its icky. (Even though it was my changes that probably made it that way) Oh and measuring stuff is for wimps, just dump and guess :D

  2. I wouldn't soak the beans the night before, that takes too much effort the next day to cook them. I soak and cook them in bulk, then can them. So I used canned beans just like you do. :-D

    Also, my cow. Measuring stuff means that next time you can actually reproduce the dish you DID like! Measuring is for engineers who like to get stuff right more than once, and I happen to have married one who insists on the kitchen being run the same way...I'm horrified to realize after reading your guys' experiences that he's right. Darn men.

  3. Geez. .. I even scale eggs to the gram so I can my bread right. .. That was perfect Kara scaling though! Hope it turned out good.
    I am making some Molokai sweet potaoto chips in cococonut oil to go with some fresh mahi mahi for fish n chips tonight

  4. Well, I do measure, but I don't write down my changes and then I don't know what they were for next time!

  5. I do measure.. I just tend to use measuring cups for an approximation- ie I just use the 1 cup measure for all things, 1/4 c, 1/2 cup, 1/3 cup whatever. That way I only have 1 dirty measuring cup at the end. Spices, I just sprinkle til it looks right