Thursday, November 3, 2011

Julie's Raspberry Salsa Chili

One of my favorite parts of moving home when I made the trek from Atlanta to Nashville was getting back together with some of my oldest and dearest friends.  What came as a wonderful surprise to me was the gift it was to get to know my old friends NEW friends!  When we were in the habit of having girls dinner ever Tuesday night one of those lovely new friends said she would like to host and what a delicious meal it was.  Since those days, Julie Burkhalter, the origin of this amazing recipe, has become a dear friend and one I am grateful to know. Her kind, warm heart, her pleasant loving manner, and her humor and wit are only a few of the reasons this Roanoke, VA native has become such a beautiful friend to so many Nashvillians!  Thank you Julie for introducing me to what I honestly believe is my favorite chili I have ever had!  Of course, it must be stated that this recipe cannot be made without also including Julie's cornbread as it is the perfect compliment to this chili especially on a cool, crisp fall evening!

Julie's Greenbrier Raspberry Salsa Black Bean Chili
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 lb. ground beef or turkey
1 small onion, diced
½ red bell pepper, diced
½ green bell pepper, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
¾ cup rasberry salsa**
2 cups drained, canned tomatoes, diced
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon  cayenne pepper (or more if you like it hot!)
1 can (15 oz.) black beans, drained
1 cup frozen white corn (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil in a large heavy saucepan or cast-iron chili pot.  Brown ground beef/turkey.  
Drain any excess fat or oil.  
Add onions, garlic, red & green peppers; cook until veggies are soft.  
Add salsa, canned tomatoes, chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, frozen corn, and black beans.  

Stir to combine thoroughly.  Sometimes if I know I am going to let the soup simmer for a while before serving I add one can full of water to thin it out so it doesn't dry out in the simmering process.
Add salt and pepper to taste.  Simmer for 30 minutes.  Taste and correct seasoning if necessary.  Serve piping hot w/ grated cheese, chopped green onions, and sour cream.  

Best served with:
Julie's Corn Bread

Note from Julie: Re: the rasberry salsa, I found it at Fresh Market in Brentwood.  The brand is Robert Rothschild.  The RR website says that Whole Foods carries it as well.  They didn’t have it when I was there last week, but they may carry it in the future.  A lot of times I order it from the Greenbrier Resort website and keep it on hand since we eat this a lot.  Yes, the secret ingredient can be a pain to find!

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