Turkey Chili Verde – Smithey Ironware

Turkey Chili Verde

This recipe is all about building layers of deep flavor. First we fry fresh corn tortillas in canola oil, which yields a crispy garnish and corn-infused oil for cooking. We blister onions and multiple varieties of green peppers in that oil, which are later blended with some of the beans and tortillas, yielding authentic fire-roasted chile flavor and hearty body to the soup. The results are rich and spicy and the perfect foil for a post-Thanksgiving meal.

Turkey Chili Verde

Serves 8-10

1/2 cup canola oil
6 corn tortillas, cut into thin strips
1 large yellow onion, cut into 1/8s
4 poblano peppers, stem and seeds removed, cut into large pieces
4 anaheim or hatch peppers, stem and seeds removed, cut into large pieces
2 serrano peppers, stems and seeds removed
4 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
8 cups chicken or turkey broth
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
2 lbs shredded cooked turkey (white and dark meat)
4 (14-oz) cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt, or to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons lime juice, plus more for serving
8 ounces grated Pepperjack cheese, divided
1/4 cup roughly chopped cilantro, more for garnish



Heat canola oil in 7¼-quart Dutch Oven over medium heat until shimmering. Add tortilla strips and fry until golden and toasty, about 3-4 minutes (work in two batches to avoid crowding). Remove from oil with tongs and transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel and sprinkle with salt.


Add the large pieces of onion, poblano, anaheim and 1 of the serrano peppers to the same hot oil. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are charred and blistered and begin to soften, about 8-10 minutes. Add garlic cloves, cumin, and coriander and cook 2 minutes longer. Remove the pot from the heat.


Carefully transfer all of the charred vegetables to a blender or a food process. Add 1 cup chicken broth, 1 can of beans, and a handful of the fried tortilla strips. Pulse until everything is very finely chopped into a thick puree.


Add puree back to the (still-hot) pot and stir in remaining broth and salt. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then stir in turkey meat and remaining beans. Simmer for 15-20 minutes to allow flavors to meld.


Stir in lime juice, half of the grated cheese, and the cilantro. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.


Ladle chili generously into serving bowls. Top with more cilantro, more grated cheese, and fried tortilla strips. Top with thinly sliced serrano if desired for more heat.


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