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Thursday, January 3, 2008

Italian Chili

This recipe comes from my latest copy of Cuisine at Home, the February 2008 one to be exact. I thought it sounded interesting, but I started doubting it as I prepared it. It seemed like it was going to be a big ol' pot of spaghetti sauce that I would be adding beans to in the end and for some reason that seemed a little gross to me. When it was all said and done, the chili was pretty much a pasta sauce with beans, but it was actually good. I made a few changes to the recipe, however. Their recipe called for 1/2 pound stick of pepperoni cubed, where I used 3 ounces of proscuitto. They called for 2 28-ounce cans of whole tomatoes and I used crushed and pureed. I used 1 cup of diced onion as opposed to their 2 cups and I used 2 cans of cannellini beans, where they used 1 and 1 of red kidney. I also added a bay leaf to my recipe and added my seasonings when I added the tomatoes. They added their seasonings when they added the beans and I felt it needed the seasonings to cook with the tomatoes.

Italian Chili

1 lb. bulk Italian sausage
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 cup onion, diced
3 oz. prosciutto, diced
2 cloves garlic. minced
1 Tbsp. tomato paste
1/2 cup dry red wine
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 can (28 oz) tomato puree
1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes in puree
1 cup chicken broth
2 cans (14 oz) cannellini beans
1 Tbsp. dried Italian seasoning
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
salt to taste

Saute sausage in oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. When brown add onion, prosciutto and garlic; cook 5 minutes. Stir in tomato paste and saute 1 minute.
Deglaze with wine and vinegar; reduce until nearly evaporated. Add tomatoes, broth, seasonings, red pepper flakes and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer and cook 20 minutes.
Stir in beans, add salt to taste and simmer until heated through, 5 minutes.

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