I made this chicken chili recipe for the first time many a year ago. We had a large group of our friends over for an informal gathering and I made a big pot of veggie chili as well as a big pot of this chicken chili which I had been salivating over in my Barefoot Contessa Parties cookbook for too long. The pot of chicken chili was empty in record time, which stung a little, as I've always thought that I make the best vegetarian chili in the universe. (Stupid meat-eaters.) With the roasted chicken and the addition of fresh basil, this is a special chili treat which doesn't take much longer to prepare than your usual chili recipe. Unless you eat chili out of a can. In which case, I can't help you.
(adapted from Barefoot Contessa Parties! by Ina Garten)
4 c. chopped yellow onions
1/8 c. good olive oil (plus more for chicken)
4 cloves minced garlic
2 orange (or red) bell peppers, large-diced
2 yellow bell peppers, large-diced
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (or more, to taste)
2 tsp kosher salt (plus more for chicken)
2 28 oz. cans whole peeled tomatoes, in puree
1/4 c minced fresh basil
4 split bone in, skin on chicken breasts
freshly ground black pepper
Cook the onions in the olive oil over medium-low heat until translucent (about 15 minutes). Add garlic, cook for one minute. Add bell peppers and all the spices and cook for another minute. Crush the tomatoes by hand and add to the pot with the fresh basil. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Place chicken on a large baking sheet. Rub the chicken breasts with olive oil, sprinkle generously with salt and fresh ground black pepper. Roast chicken for 40 minutes, until just cooked. Let cool enough until easy to handle and separate the meat from the bones and skin and cut into bite-sized chunks. Add to the chili and simmer, uncovered, for another 20 minutes. Serve with chopped onion, shredded white cheddar cheese, and sour cream.