Sunday Dinner: Cheesy Salsa Chicken Chili

Sunday Dinner: Cheesy Salsa Chicken Chili

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.

Ingredients

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

Directions

  1. Fry chicken in a large wok on medium high until cooked.
  2. Reduce heat to medium and add salsa and mix, exposing all of the chicken to the salsa.
  3. Add black beans, garlic powder and chili flakes and mix.
  4. In a separate pot, boil chicken broth. Once boiling, throw in the cream cheese and parsley until the cheese looks like a cream sauce.
  5. 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.
  6. Finally, add the Tex-Mex to the wok, cooking on medium low for about 5 minutes.
  7. 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.

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