It's like the unholy love child of Charlie Brown and Pigpen. (Envision that for a second.) A constant accompaniment of clouds, only they are (for the most part) sad gloomy thunderclouds instead of dusty little stench-clouds.
And it's hell on writing. Hell on everything. Hell on everybody who has to be around me. (Sorry, family.)
I've been making the soups and not blogging them. And the backlog is getting fierce. And who really wants to read recipes interspersed with whining? Waah waah, poor me and my First World problems.
Anyway: Yesterday's soup was, according to Fisher, "one of the ten best [I]'ve made so far." Not so sure if that's necessarily the case, but... it didn't suck, either. And it's 100% Crock-Pot friendly, but it still feels like Real Cooking 'cause there's browning and stirring and timing involved. But not too much. You can make it even if you're in the Funkiest Funk that ever Funked. (Wish this funk were funky, instead of just funked-up.)
White Chicken Chili, which could also be made with veggie broth and no chicken, in which case I'd throw in some mushrooms and/or roasted red peppers
Adapted from Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook , my favorite Crock-Pot cookbook
Serves plenty; Fisher had thirds last night, Rhys had seconds, and now everyone but me is eating the leftovers for lunch
1 pound white beans, picked over, rinsed and drained
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
8 cups chicken broth
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 more onion, chopped
2 jalapenos, seeded and minced
1 pound bone-in chicken thighs, skinned and extraneous fat removed (or boneless/skinless thighs... either way)
2 4-ounce cans roasted green ("Ortega") chiles
2 tsp ground oregano
2 tsp ground cumin
A fat pinch of ground cloves
1 Tbsp poblano chile powder or other pure chile powder (look in the "Mexican foods" aisle for the little plastic bags)
2 medium zucchini, quartered lengthwise and sliced
1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
1 to 2 tsp salt
For serving: grated Cheddar cheese and sliced black olives, plus some liquid hot sauce for those who like such things
In a medium to large slow cooker, combine beans, 1 chopped onion, minced garlic and chicken broth. Cover and cook on High for about an hour, then switch to Low and cook for about two hours more. (Or just cook it on High for two hours. Yesterday's cooking schedule had to adapt to my being gone for various chunks of the day. Your results will probably vary.)
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and jalapeno and cook, stirring frequently, until just tender. Add chicken and cook, stirring veggies around the edges but not disturbing the chicken, until well browned; flip and cook on the other side until similarly well browned. Transfer mixture to slow cooker. Add canned chiles, oregano, cumin, cloves and chili powder; stir well; switch to Low heat if it's not there already; cover and cook for about 6 hours, stirring once or twice if you think of it.
When chicken is cooked through but still tender, remove with tongs and allow to cool slightly. Strip meat off the bones if the bones are still in it. Chop meat and stir back into chili, together with zucchini, corn and salt. Cover and cook on Low for 30 minutes to an hour, or until zucchini is nice and tender. You should have time to make some cornbread in the interim, and then everything will be done at the same time and you will feel so incredibly accomplished.
Top each serving with a sprinkling of cheese and chopped black olives, plus a few drips of hot sauce if you like.