White Hot Chili

The key to achieving a great white chili with flavour and zip is using a wide variety of chiles and spices.  A note with the peppers: the “heat” element of chile peppers is contained in the white ribs and concentrated under the stem so leave them or remove them to suit your taste.  The seeds are not hot but merely more difficult to digest and sometimes bitter so remove them.  Handle the hot peppers last on your cutting board so that they don’t contaminate anything else with their heat.  Read our page, Chili Secrets, for tips.

Serves 6

  • 1⅓ lbs (600gr) ground chicken
  • 2 Tbsp olive or grapeseed oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, finely chopped 
  • pinch salt
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 hot yellow wax or Hungarian pepper, seeded and minced
  • 3 - 4 green Jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced 
  • 2 - 3 green, yellow, or orange Scotch Bonnet peppers, seeded and minced
  • 1 can or 2 fresh green Serrano peppers, minced
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2  cans (540ml/15oz each) white kidney beans, drained and mashed somewhat
  • 1 jar of roasted yellow peppers or 1 yellow bell pepper roasted and skinned, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp each dried oregano and ground cumin
  • 1 tsp each garlic powder and dried mustard powder
  • ½ tsp lemon zest
  • 2 tsp or to taste, green hot sauce
  • salt to taste

For garnish:

  • fresh cilantro (preferred) or parsley, minced
  • sour cream
  • Pepper Jack cheese or Havarti with peppers, grated

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a sauté pan over medium-high heat.  Brown the ground chicken, breaking it up as it cooks.  Set aside when done.

In a large soup pot, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat.  Sauté the onion and carrot with a pinch of salt until softened.  Add in the garlic and hot peppers and sauté for a few minutes - careful - the hot peppers can become very aromatic to the point of irritation as they heat up.  Pour in the chicken stock and bring the pot to a strong simmer.  Add the beans, yellow bell peppers, and remaining ingredients.  Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the chili reaches a desired thickness, 30 minutes to one hour.  Season with hot sauce and then salt to taste.  For this chili, it’s best to add the salt at the end because the hot sauce will affect saltiness.

Stir in fresh cilantro or parsley just before serving.  Place a spoonful of sour cream into the bottom of each soup bowl.  Pour chili over top and add a scant bit of grated cheese on top.  As you spoon up the chili from the bottom, you’ll be stirring in more and more of the sour cream, which will have a welcomed cooling effect as the heat of the chili sinks in.  

Serve with cornbread and a pilsner or unoaked Chardonnay.

For some killer cornbread recipes, check out Best Ever CornbreadButtermilk Mexican Corn BreadNippy Zucchini Cornbread, and plain Zucchini Cornbread.


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