Sundays are typically quiet affairs where I spend much of the day cleaning and generally preparing for the week ahead. It is also the day I cook myself the meals I need for the coming work week, so much of my Sunday afternoons are spent in the kitchen. In my Sunday Dinner series, I highlight some of my culinary concoctions. This week’s dinner is…
Cheesy Salsa Chicken Chili
This is more of a fusion-style comfort food taken to cheesy extreme. I can’t quite remember where I got the idea from, but I’m certain the inspiration for it came from a slow cooker recipe I had once tried in my early days of living in Kitsilano, where the only things I had to furnish my kitchen were a kettle, a rice cooker and a slow cooker.
Though tonight I didn’t have the time to break out the slow cooker, the final product came out better than I had expected. There’s a certain convenience to the “throw it in and let it sit for a few hours” type of cooking, but I’ve learned that quality is somewhat compromised when I compare it with this evening’s dinner.
5 chicken breasts, cubed
1 jar of salsa
2 tbsp garlic powder
2 tbsp red child flakes
2 cans of black beans, washed and drained
1 cup chicken broth
1 pkg of plain Philly cream cheese
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 pkg of Tex-Mex shredded cheese
- Fry chicken in a large wok on medium high until cooked.
- Reduce heat to medium and add salsa and mix, exposing all of the chicken to the salsa.
- Add black beans, garlic powder and chili flakes and mix.
- In a separate pot, boil chicken broth. Once boiling, throw in the cream cheese and parsley until the cheese looks like a cream sauce.
- Once the cream cheese and chicken broth is cooked, add it to the wok and mix well with the chicken, beans and salsa. Continue cooking on medium for about 10-12 minutes.
- Finally, add the Tex-Mex to the wok, cooking on medium low for about 5 minutes.
- Serve, with rice or as a standalone.
Once this is done, you should have something that resembles a thick chowder-style soup. I usually serve this in a bowl of rice and mix, but if you wanted to serve this as a standalone, you could add corn to the mix to give it a more hearty feel. I usually have used Tomatillo green salsa instead of the thick red one, but I couldn’t find it today. The red salsa did the job better than expected, and it came out a bit more spicy than it would have with the green salsa.
The chicken also came out better than expected. It had been cooking for so long that I was sure the chicken would end up being overcooked. It came out perfect — in fact, better than it would have in the slow cooker. My slow cooker tends to cook the chicken to a point where it simply shreds while mixing it. It would be good if I was making a type of chicken noodle soup, but not so much for this.
Lunches until Wednesday with the leftovers from tonight.