A chili and a chat

I love-love-love a good nosh with cherished friends!

In fact, a nibble and a natter with beloved friends is my best therapy. Lately, I’ve been talking more about THE PEOPLE AT MY TABLE – this is meant to be both a figurative and literal commentary on who I choose to have in my life. I choose – and am utterly grateful for – friends and family who lift me up, who inspire me, and who appreciate me for…well, me. At this point in my life, I am humbled and honoured by the people who have pulled up a chair to my table.

My tribe.

On that note, I enjoyed a beautiful chinwag with two sweet friends the other night. We sunk into the sofa and dipped slabs of homemade flax bread into steaming bowls of white chili. No pretenses, no judgment. No make-up. Just yoga pants and lots of laughter.

Turns out, the meal was as fabulous as the women! So, of course, I must share the recipes!

First off, I decided to try out a grain-free bread and whipped up this winner from Elana’s Pantry. Take a peek here for her easy-peasy recipe! Note: this recipe is presented as a ‘focaccia’ but she also explains that you can prepare it as a loaf, which is what I did. Read through to the end of the recipe for details on ‘loafing’ it!

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And here is the nourishing chili recipe that warmed our cockles:

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White Chicken Chili a la Slow Cooker (sans beans)

Based on Slow Cooker White Chicken Chili, The Real Foods Dieticians

Ingredients

1 medium bell pepper, any color; diced

1 medium onion, diced

1 large sweet potato or yam, diced

1 ½ cups brussels sprouts, halved (or quartered, depending on size)

6 cloves garlic, minced

2 ½ tsp ground cumin

2 tsp dried oregano

2 tsp thyme

2 tsp chili powder

2 tsp paprika

1 T curry powder (I used Harmonic Arts’ Indian Spice Curry…oh-so-good!)

Sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste

1 ½ – 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs or combo

4 cups organic chicken or vegetable broth (2-3 cups for a thicker chili, otherwise will be soup-like but still delicious)

1 14-ounce can full-fat coconut milk

Avocado chunks and lime wedges, as garnish

Preparation

Chop all veggies and heap into slow cooker container, with spices, sea salt and pepper. Arrange chicken pieces over top. Add broth. Put lid on and set slow cooker to low – for 7-8 hours. When you reach cooking time, remove chicken and shred with two forks; return to slow cooker. Add coconut milk, stir and taste – adjust spices accordingly (bland is not an option!). Replace lid and cook on high for another 10 minutes. Ladle into big bowls and top with chunks of avocado and a drizzle of fresh lime juice. Delicious!  Note: I used 4 cups of broth and found the finished product a little too soupy for my liking, so I made a little slurry – whisked 2 T water with 1 T arrowroot starch – and stirred into my chili. Made for the perfect consistency!

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