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It's easy to get answers about health and nutrition! Just send your question by email to askdrgourmet@drgourmet.com and Dr. Harlan will respond to selected questions of general interest. Answers will be posted in the Ask Dr. Gourmet newsletter (sign up now!) and archived in the Ask Dr. Gourmet section of the website.

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Ask Dr. Gourmet



Why don't you use broth instead of water in this soup?

Regarding the Black Bean Chili recipe, I was wondering why you would want to add 6 cups of water to this chili instead of beef broth or maybe half broth and half water. I find that using broth either chicken or beef instead of water in grits, rice, beans or just about any kind of vegetable adds a lot more flavor and doesn't have the flat taste one gets from water.

Dr. Gourmet Says...

A bowl of black bean chili

There are times when I will use stock, others water, and often a combination of the two as you suggest. In this particular recipe I didn't want the poultry flavor to dominate because I wanted the focus to be more on the beans. By cooking the chili for a long time, the turkey supplies a lot of the flavor into the dish that stock would and at the same time the softening of the beans adds a creamy texture and some depth of flavor.

This is the great thing about recipes - endless variety. I think that this chili would be great with stock.

Thanks for writing,

Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP
Dr. Gourmet