Southwest Butternut Squash Chili

Butternut Squash Chili
Another summer is in the books!

NOOOOOOOO!!!
(That was 8 o’s and 3 !’s if you’re counting)

As if on cue, the weather here in Seattle has turned on a dime. Our 3-month streak of sunshine and 70/80 degrees has dissolved to a damp and gloomy bummer-fest just one day after Labor Day. It’s really unbelievable! Mother Nature has impeccable timing!

Southwest Squash ChiliNo matter how much I protest, deny it, or throw a full-on emotional tantrum, fall always seems to break down my fierce desire for a never-ending summer and reel me back in with promises of cable knit sweaters, tall boots, furry jackets, pumpkin lattes, and an alluring array of piping hot soups.

While I would love to delve into my obsession for buying boots in every color, shape and style, this is a food blog… so lets talk soup, shall we?!

I took a big risk this week by trying out a Butternut Squash Chili. My sister Sue Southwest Butternut Squash Chilimade a chili with squash and beef during one of our sister weekends and it’s always stuck with me. I decided to try out my own version with butternut squash, black beans, peppers, and turkey. And y’know what, it was pretty (unexpectedly) fantastic!

It’s my first chili of the season and it just seemed right with cooler days ahead and football around the corner. It’s also an easy turn for week night or weekend dinners. I wish I had the patience to let a chili stew and simmer all day… but this girl has a lot of boots to buy. Ain’t nobody got time for dat!

INGREDIENTS
1 medium butternut squash (cut into small, 1 inch pieces)
1 large green pepper (cut into bite-size chunks)
1 small yellow onion (chopped)
3 cloves of garlic (minced)
2 medium jalapenos (seeded and diced)
2 15 oz cans black beans (drained)
1 15 oz can diced tomato with chilies
2 15 oz can vegetable broth
1 pound ground turkey
3 teaspoons chili powder, divided
1 teaspoon salt.
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons olive oil
1-2 avocados

PREP
1. Heat olive oil on medium heat in a large pot. Add chopped onion, green pepper and jalapeno and cook about 8 minutes until onions begin to carmelize, stirring often.
2. Add garlic and cook another 2 minutes.
3. Add squash, tomatoes, broth, beans, 2 teaspoons chili powder, salt, cinnamon and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and let chili simmer for a 1/2 hour.
4. While chili is simmering, brown your turkey sausage in a pan and set aside.
5. Once the squash is tender, add ground turkey or turkey sausage to the pot along with the remaining teaspoon of chili powder and let simmer for another 10-15 minutes.
6. Spoon chili into bowls and top with diced avocado

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