Charred Leek & Tomatillo Chili

eat your greens

Part two of my New Orleans trip: the swamp! Kramer and his friends went on a swamp tour when they were visiting a few weeks earlier, so I booked a trip for us on the same tour. It was super fun and not nearly as creepy as I thought it would be. We floated through the water, going fast at times and at other times barely moving as we passed homes or hunting cottages. Some of the houses were beautiful and looked like something you’d see on a decorating websites, other had fallen into disrepair and seemed as if they were minutes away from falling into the river altogether. Our guide explained that since it was so difficult to build these places in the swamp to begin with, when someone died or their family didn’t want to keep up with the property, the place would simply be abandoned, left to decay and sink into the water. It was obviously super cool to see and maybe the only “creepy” part of the tour. The best part was, of course, seeing wild pigs! They were so cute, especially when they were munching on the marshmallows and white bread that our guide threw out to them. There were even little wild piglets with funny ears and wobbly legs. It. Was. Awesome. We could have sat there all day, but we had gators to find. We only saw one, unfortunately, peeking its eyes out through a marsh, but that was enough for me, to be honest. The swamp itself was beautiful and green and unlike anything I’d ever seen before. If you’re ever in New Orleans, I highly recommend Honey Island Swamp Tours – it was a blast.

charred leek and tomatillo chiliI couldn’t tell if this house was abandoned or not.

I figured since this was a green chili and I’d be sharing photos of the green swamp, this recipe would be perfect to post today. I love chili and no matter how many times I make it, I don’t think I’ll ever get sick of eating a big bowl. I make it for lunches all the time because it’s generally so easy to make a big pot to eat throughout the week. I had all of these ingredients on hand and had planned to make something completely different with them, but the day got the better of me and I decided to do something easier. I still blackened the leeks and tomatillos, though, because I figured it would add a depth of flavor and make my chili taste like I had spent a lot more time on it than I actually had. So, I charred, peeled, pureed and cooked, and with the help of a little beer, pork, beef and seasoning, I had a deliciously spicy chili on my hands. Top it with cheese, sour cream, scallions or whatever else you prefer – it’s the same green chili you’ve grown to love with what I suppose could be called a farmer’s market twist (I guess I do live in Brooklyn).

charred leek and tomatillo chili (more…)

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