White chili was one of my first successful attempts when I began teaching myself how to cook. Now I try to make it at least a couple of times a year. In all the time since, that original recipe has taken on a life of its own.
I am particularly attached to the evolved version, but since chili is often nothing more than a bit of this and a dash of that, I have never taken the opportunity to put this favorite into writing until now.
I made an especially delicious batch last Thanksgiving using leftover turkey, to great fanfare from my relatives. When my brother-in-law declared it to be a new annual tradition, I realized I had to get it down on paper. For my family's sake, I finally took the time to note every detail, from ingredient measures to cooking time, and to taste (and taste) the chili until it had been tweaked to perfection.
This recipe is really good right off the stove, but it keeps getting better if you are willing to wait. Use a heavy hand when you season now is not the time to cut back on salt, be sure to grind in plenty of black pepper. It serves a family or makes dinner plus plenty of leftovers for a household of just two.
Nealey Dozier is a writer for TheKitchn.com, a national blog about food and home cooking.
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