I love that chili is a 'use what you have' soup, and that's what I do. Today I used black and garbanzo beans; two cans of garbanzo, four of black and two cans of diced tomatoes. Dump 'em all in a slow cooker (I have a large oval), draining the juices of the garbanzo beans. If you're opposed to canned goods, feel free to sub in beans that you've soaked overnight, but I am just not that planful.
As I layered in the beans, I added about a palmful of chili powder, a healthy sprinkling of cumin and about a teaspoon of salt. You could also use a pouch of chili seasoning. This is great on its own, served with Greek yogurt and shredded cheese or whatever you like on chili. However, my carnivorous J has requested meat in his chili so I also browned a pound if lean ground turkey, seasoned with chili powder, cumin, salt pepper and about a teaspoon of cinnamon.
Stir it all together and let 'er rip in the crock pot all day.
About a half hour before serving I made Mark Bittman's skillet cornbread, using liquid egg whites and maple syrup in place of the sugar, and 3/4 c. greek yogurt and 1/2 c. milk instead of just milk. I love not only how simple this is to prepare, but also the fact that you warm the fat first and then pour the batter on top, creating a perfectly crunchy crust, while still getting a bread that's not dry (I just really don't like the word moist) in the middle.
Cornbread muffins and pancakes are a big thing in Massachusetts, and when I was in the hospital having Charlie, they were on the breakfast menu...and I ordered them every single day. I now have an affinity for the flavor combination of cornbread and maple...makes me think of that sweet baby boy when what I have now is a crazy roaring toddler.
Dinner is served!