Megan's Healthy Holiday Food: Chili
By the time I turned 18, I had lived nine different places: 6 states, 2 countries. With each move came a new home, new school, new friends, new cultures, new everything! It’s hard to keep any sense of normalcy when everything is changing for you every 1-3 years. However, no matter where we were (even in Japan!), in the fall there was always a chili cookout on base. I know, what a weird thing to be consistent in a child’s life, a chili cookoff!? It’s true. I looked forward to it year after year. Whenever fall comes around my body just starts to crave chili, as if it knows.
Obviously, this year there aren’t any cookoffs going on, so I decided to make some myself! Here is a healthy (but still yummy) chili that I think is cookoff worthy- enjoy!
- 1 ½ tsp olive oil
- 1 pound ground turkey
- 1 onion
- 2 cups water
- 1 (16 oz) can black beans- drained and rinsed
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 2 tbsp chili powder
- ½ tsp paprika
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- ½ tsp ground cayenne pepper
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- Optional: fresh and chopped celery, tomatoes, carrots, peppers
- Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Place ground turkey in the pot and cook until evenly brown.
- Stir in onion and cook until tender.
- Mix in other beans (and other optional veggies if you have them), and all seasonings.
- Bring to a boil then reduce to low heat, cover and let simmer for 30 minutes.
Shelby's Healthy Holiday Food:
Rosemary Buttered Cornish Hen with Cran-Apple Wild Rice Stuffing
After moving to 4 new cities and living in 11 homes in 10 years I’ve learned that thanksgiving can’t always be a big magnificent get together with your closest friends and cooking a whole turkey for 1-2 people is A LOT of work. I love this healthy alternative to a full blown thanksgiving turkey because it’s perfect for small families, kids can have fun with having their own bird, it takes less than 45 minutes to prepare AND it’s exponentially healthier and not as dry as traditional turkey recipes. Honestly making this makes no matter where I’m at feel like home. And this stuffing??? I promise you will not regret this healthy swap. It takes like the real deal for a third of the calories. But don’t skimp on the sage, get it fresh and don’t go easy on it.
- 2 Cornish game hens
- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- Pinch of salt
- 2 tbsp unsalted Butter
- ½ tsp cracked Pepper
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
- Melt butter in microwave. Once removed add fresh thyme, pepper, salt and rosemary to bowl of butter and combine.
- Baste completely thawed Hens with aromatic herb butter.
- Optional: stuff hens with aromatics such as a clove garlic, onions, herbs and celery. Get creative here, however do not expect to eat the aromatics (more in this later).
- Place hens on a roasting pan and then put on the middle rack of the oven and roast for approx. 20 minutes.
- Start your stuffing (directions below).
- After 20 minutes turn the temperature down to 375 and continue to roast until the internal temperature of the thickest piece of Hen is 180 degrees and the fluids run clear when poked.
- Remove from oven, let rest for 10 minutes.
- Remove aromatic stuffing and replace with crab-apple wild rice stuffing.
Pro Tip: We do not eat stuffing cooked in our Hens (or any bird for that matter) due to risk of salmonella. Instead we let the aromatics season the bird while cooking and then stuff pre-cooked stuffing in afterwards. This will also ensure that the stuffing is cooked through completely.
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup chopped onion
- 1/4 cup chopped celery
- 1/3 cup coarsely chopped pecans
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh sage
- 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
- 1/2 cups cooked Royal/Wild Blend rice
- 1/2 cup peeled, diced Fuji apples (1/4-inch dice, about 1/2 large apple)
- 1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries
- 3 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- Pinch of kosher salt and freshly-ground black pepper
- Splash apple cider
- Melt butter in a skillet until foaming subsides.
- Add onions and celery and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add pecans, sage, thyme, and 1/4 teaspoon each kosher salt and pepper. Cook for about 3 more minutes, until pecans are fragrant.
- Deglaze the pan with a small splash of apple cider, and scrape any brown bits from the bottom.
- Remove from heat and stir in cooked rice, apples, cranberries, and parsley. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Place stuffing mix in a small pan and place in the oven with the turkey for the last 5-10 minutes to let the flavors meld.