Food on Friday: Green chile chicken chili

When I was growing up one of the dishes my mom made all the time was called 5-Can Casserole. From what I recall, it was made out of a can of cooked chicken, a can of cream of chicken soup, a can (or defrosted bag) of peas, and a can of those LaChoy crunchy Chinese noodles (which are probably about as Chinese as I am) and some milk to loosen it all up. You’d put some noodles in the casserole and then top it with some more and bake until the whole ridiculous thing was goopy and fabulous.

This recipe reminds me of that somehow, even though the only thing in common is the canned chicken (which isn’t mandatory). But like 5-can casserole, you can pull it together from pantry items – the only fresh produce you need is an onion and a bell pepper (the latter could be omitted if need be). Canned chicken is handy in a pinch, but it’s not even that cheap these days, so if you have leftover chicken or a couple chicken breasts you can sauté and dice, that would be fine as well.

Green chile chicken chili (say that five times fast!)

1 small onion, diced
1 medium bell pepper (red looks nicest), diced
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups chicken broth
2 large cans diced chicken breast
1 4oz can diced green chiles
1 can cannellini beans
2 tablespoons cumin
¼ tablespoon red pepper flakes (optional but it does round out the other chile flavor nicely)

Saute the onion and bell pepper until softened in olive oil; add the garlic briefly and stir. Add the rest of the ingredients, bring to a boil, and then simmer until the flavors have combined.

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