Confetti Chile

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Yes, I know, chili is probably not the recipe you were expecting, now that the weather has finally turned a corner, and at least in D.C. those last few piles of mucky snow are being overtaken by the pale green shoots of early-spring’s crocuses and daffodils. Chili is a cold-weather food, best eaten in the frosty darkness of winter.

At least that’s what I used to think until I concocted this recipe a few months ago. At its heart, it’s a Cinncinati-style chili courtesy of some ground beef and tomato sauce. The addition of some diced red pepper, yellow corn, and black beans, however, give it a colorful, confetti-like vibe while also lightening it considerably, making it splendid for warmer months as well.

A perfect weeknight recipe for busy families emerging from the winter doldrums. What more could you ask for?

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Chile Rubbed Chicken Thighs

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The idea for this recipe was sparked by the most mundane of tasks – a trip to the grocery store.  I’m always on the lookout for healthy items that can be prepared with minimal effort for weeknight dinners.  On this particular trip, I noticed a display case with packages of bone-in chicken thighs with a chile rub already applied.  The instructions said to bake in a preheated 375° oven for about 40 minutes.

Terrific idea, I thought!  I took them home and, a few nights later, popped them into the preheated oven for the specified amount of time.  Voila!  Combined with a couple of easy-to-make sides I threw together while the thighs were roasting, dinner was done!

Now, being the sort of person who assumes that any prepared food that possesses the winning trifecta of being quick to prepare, healthy, and good tasting won’t be available for long (case in point:  I no longer buy my old go-to  jarred tomato sauce because it now has added sugar), I immediately started to consider how to replicate the idea at home. Read More