Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Turkey Pumpkin Chili

This morning we woke to snow. I looked out of the window and saw a scene worthy of any of those glass snowball decorations (after being shaken furiously). So far there hasn’t been a lot of accumulation, maybe a couple of inches, but it finally looks Christmas-ey out. Over a week later. Oh well, too many icy, cold, snowy Decembers have been complained about, so why not also complain about a warm, rainy December as well? If I lived in a more temperate climate I probably would not get to complain about the weather at all (and where, anyway, is that Vicci-perfect climate?).

The flotsam and jetsam of Christmas are littered about the house. Due to work on the house and barn, I finally got around to decorating too little, too late; and then with becoming sick over Christmas and the week-plus thereafter, very little straightening-up was accomplished. I’ve been sitting around, eating the leftover seasonal goodies, and feeling like a blob. Jack is finally feeling better (a more miserable patient there could never be), and my breathing is improving, but I have learned that the process cannot be rushed or there will be an inevitable backward slide. I will try to put up with taking it easy for the next few days. I cannot promise that my husband, however, will do the same.

To help us both in our recoveries, and also to try and offset the delicious cookies and candies which neither of us can seem to ignore, I am preparing healthy meals. I had a single pumpkin from my garden this year (which, actually, was a surprise because I forgot to plant pumpkin), and it has been sitting on the kitchen counter for weeks. I used half for dinner last night.

I really don’t know what I did before Trader Joe came into my life. Well, I do. I never had the option to buy the variety of items which are available at that store. If I wanted a curry, I made a curry from (almost) scratch. Having TJ’s bottled curry sauces on hand, in both the Indian and the Thai varieties, is a great convenience.

Although I do feel better these days, I’m rather tired and breathless by the day’s end and looking for something relatively quick to make for dinner. Yesterday I was craving a nice, warming, coconut-scented Thai curry. I pulled a bottle of Trader Joe’s Thai Yellow Curry sauce from the pantry, sautéed chicken and onions, added the sauce, added chunks of fresh pumpkin, and simmered until the pumpkin softened. Just before serving I stirred in chopped fresh spinach. Served over jasmine rice, with a sprinkling of cashews on top, it was thoroughly enjoyable and almost too easy. :)

Tonight, I am going to use the other half of that pumpkin for Turkey Pumpkin Chili, which I wrote about last January.


(after-dinner note: great chili recipe! To save time, I sauteed the ground turkey, then added the onions through garlic, and then the canned tomatoes, etc. Very delicious and warming.)