Sweet Potato, Poblano, and Chorizo Chili

This recipe, from Rebecca H. of West Des Moines, won second place in out 2019 Iowa State Fair Chili Contest!

1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2″ cubes
1 poblano pepper, seeded and chopped
1 large shallot, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
2 garlic cloves, minced
28 oz can of crushed tomatoes
2 x 15 oz cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1 Cup chicken broth
1/2 Cup V-8 vegetable juice
2 bay leaves
1 Tbsp Guajillo Powder
1 Tbsp De Arbol Powder
1 Tbsp Poblano Powder
1 Tbsp Tomato Powder
1 Tbsp Umami Dust
1-1/2 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp Onion, Powered
1/2 tsp Cumin
1/4 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 Allspice, Ground
4 oz goat cheese, crumbled

Heat olive oil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the sweet potato chunks, poblano peppers, and shallots. Season with salt and pepper, then sauté until potatoes begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add chorizo then sauté until cooked through, breaking it up as the sausage cooks. Drain any excess grease, then stir in garlic and cook for additional 30 seconds.

Add the remaining ingredients, (aside from the cheese), then stir to combine. Bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Once chili starts to boil, turn the heat down to medium-low then place lid partially on top, simmering until the sweet potatoes are completely tender, 15-20 minutes. Add the goat cheese to the soup and simmer, stirring occasionally, until cheese is melted.