Friday, April 16, 2021

N is for Northern Beans or Navy Beans or Maybe Even Nuts!

Back in February or March, I sat down and mapped out some of my blogposts for this April A to Z Challenge. Mark even made a few suggestions. As I mentioned in a previous post, instead of scrolling social media at night I began writing my posts for the month. All of a sudden, I realized that I hadn't done a very good job on this last portion of the alphabet. I've been looking through my favorite recipes trying to decide which recipes to use for the remaining letters . . .and some of the recipes will be a STRETCH to fit that letter :-). 

When I was a kid, my dad was a carpenter and then he was an engineer for the railroad (the engineer that drive the train). In hindsight, I realize we didn't have a lot of money but I didn't really know it at the time. I can look back on some of the menus my mom prepared and I realize that she was definitely cooking on a tight budget. One of the things she cooked was dried beans - pintos, big limas, northern beans, and navy beans. As a kid, I detested those big white lima beans, northern beans, and navy beans. To be honest, I'm still not fond of those big white lima beans. If I was a dinner guest in your home and you served them to me, I would eat them but I've never purchased them. Imagine my surprise, when I realized that I actually like northern beans and navy beans especially when used in White Chicken Chili. 

White Chicken Chili

Ingredients needed:
Chicken breast, cooked and cubed or shredded - (1 1/2 # raw)
1 onion, chopped fine
2 cans Northern or Navy Beans
2 can chicken broth 
1 can diced green chilis
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
minced garlic to equal 1/2 to 1 clove 
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Someone gave this recipe to me years ago. The original recipe called for 2-3 of the larger cans (12.5 ounces?) of chicken breast (yes - canned chicken!). Sometimes I still use canned chicken but I usually cook several breasts and cube them or shred them. We like a lot of chicken in ours so I use 3-4 cups of cubed or shredded cooked chicken which equates to about 1 1/2 pounds of raw boneless skinless chicken breast.

Using a large pot (or you could use a crockpot or even an instapot), add chicken, onion, beans, broth, diced green chilis, and spices. Cook over medium heat until onions are soft - probably 45 minutes to an hour. The longer you cook white chicken chili, the more the flavors meld together. You can always add another cup of water or another can of broth if soup becomes too thick.

If you want to use a crockpot, place all ingredients in crockpot and cook on low all day while at work. If you use an instapot . . . read the directions because I don't have an instapot! hahaha!

What about the nuts I mentioned in today's title?

We live in Alabama and pecans are loved by many! I purchase at least 10-12 pounds of pecans each year and keep them in my freezer. We use them in all sorts of recipes from baked goods to dips to chicken salad. Back during the spring of 2020 when we were not going anywhere (except Mark had to go to his office every day), sometimes we would crave a salty snack and not have anything in the pantry. I would grab a bag of pecans from our freezer and preheat the oven to 350. I would spread the pecans out on a cookie sheet and spritz with a little spray butter (I can't believe it's not butter spray) and a sprinkle of Lawry's seasoning salt. Bake in preheated oven for about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Enjoy snacking on these yummy pecans. 

I've also ordered large boxes of individual packs of Pistachios, Almonds, and Peanuts from Costco to keep in our pantry for a quick snack. I like most all nuts EXCEPT cashews! I cannot eat cashews.

Do you like beans - especially Northern or Navy? Do you like nuts? (I know that peanuts are not technically a "nut" but I'm using nut today!)


  1. And I am grateful you are using "nut" today, as it's the scavenger hunt word for N! I like nuts very much. Cashews are my favorite! I can't eat many though, or I have to stay close to the bathroom... Beans to me taste pretty much all the same. I don't care for the green lima beans, served like green beans or peas as the vegetable side dish.
    Kids don't realize about finances if they have all their needs met. I remember the fun shopping at thrift stores. Years later I asked my mother if we did it for fun, or we needed to. She said a little of both.
    I'm saving this recipe, it sounds really good.

  2. I love just about any kind of beans, but my hubby refuses to even try. That's a great idea to 'dress up' your pecans. Pistachios are my favorite, but I only treat myself to them every now and then.

  3. I love beans and I love nuts (even cashews) but my favorite nut is macadamia. Thanks for the recipe!!

  4. Oh I love white chicken chili so I'll have to try this recipe out!

  5. We just had chili this past week although no chicken. It is a great way to incorporate beans into a meal.

    I enjoy snacking on nuts too although typically go for almonds. Pecans aren't as prevalent in Maine. I like your recipe for jazzing them up in the oven.

    Weekends In Maine

  6. I like most nuts, but most beans are too bland for me.