A few years ago, a friend of mine came up to me and thanked me for the meal I had brought her family. She then uttered 5 glorious words I never thought another human being would ever say to me. She said,
“Can I have the recipe?”
I was dumbfounded. Blindsided. Speechless.
I recovered quickly and answered nonchalantly, as if I got asked that question everyday, “Sure. It was super easy.”
In actuality, my recipe for Chicken Chili is very easy. It was passed on to me by my mother-in-law and so it’s not even really my recipe.
The point is someone asked ME for MY recipe. In all my (then 11) years of marriage, not once had anyone asked me for my recipe.
Up until this point, for every Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner, I’d been asked to bring the bread or the drinks. Maybe a green salad. The only dish I’d ever been asked to bring required only that I could slice with a sharp object or have a strong wrist.
The fact that someone ate something of mine and enjoyed it, let alone wanted to replicate it, had me floating on cloud nine.
I then became determined to make something, anything, that was my signature dish. It didn’t matter what it was. I just wanted people to say, “Hmmmm… it’s Thanksgiving. What shall we have? Turkey. Check. Mashed Potatoes and Gravy. Check. Candied Yams. Check. Oh, and it wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without Jen’s Famous Splendiferous Stuffing.” Or something along those lines.
Sadly, I have not reached this goal on my life’s bucket list. I have managed to scrounge up a few more meals that have raised a couple of eyebrows; (Thank you, Pioneer Woman!) but nothing noteworthy.
In the meantime, I’d thought I’d share
Jen’s my mother-in-law’s super easy, peasy Chicken Chili recipe. If you are a bit handicapped in the kitchen like me, but still want to wow your friends, try this. The best part is that it’s all done in the crock pot. No cooking required.
This is also one of the Hub’s favorite meals.
3-4 chicken breasts (I use 3 when I want it to be more soupy or I’m rationing my meat. I use 4 when I want it to be thicker.)
1 medium size jar of salsa
The smallest size can of diced green chilis
1 can of black beans (don’t drain)
1 can of corn (don’t drain)
Cumin and parsley to taste (I don’t usually add these in. If I have them, I will.)
Seriously, just dump everything in! Just. Dump. Chicken breasts go in first, then everything else. I don’t mix. I dump ingredients in and put on the lid. That’s it.
I put it on high and go about my day. If I’m using frozen chicken breasts, which I always do, it cooks for about 5 hours. If you use thawed breasts, it would be less.
When the chicken is cooked through, I shred the meat with two forks, mix the ingredients with a swirl of the spoon and it’s dinner time. We love to put shredded cheese on top and then crush our chips into the chili. I’ve made cornbread before and that tastes amazing. You can top it with whatever floats your boat, sour cream, onions, etc. We have left overs for a couple of days and wrap all that deliciousness up in a tortilla for lunch.
It’s pretty impossible to mess this up, which is why I make it.
The only downside to sharing this recipe is that now people know it’s not my brilliant creation! Oh well, I can live with that.