April 25, 2009

It's Still Chilly enough for Chili!

To enjoy the last few humidity-free days in South Florida, I decided to work on my chili recipe. A camp friend from way back, Ian, has an annual Chili Bowl, and since I can't go to Minneapolis to compete, I browsed his friends' winning recipes from previous years and picked one for the basis of my own. Bud's Batch was the perfect recipe to play with, as I can control the amount of jalepeno, chili powder, the type of meat and the bean varieties. Here is the basic recipe:

3 Tablespoons vegetable oil
2 1/2 pounds ground beef
1 large red onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
3 cloves garlic
2 red jalepeno peppers
2 green jalepeno peppers
1.5 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/3 cup chili powder
28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
28 ounce can diced tomatoes
15 ounce can of black beans
15 ounce can of kidney beans
15 ounce can of chili beans

I used the ground beef but also added cubed beef tenderloin I had in the freezer. I couldn't find red jalepenos so I used green, finely diced. I omitted the seasoned salt, added corn and doubled the whole recipe so we would have a lot left over to freeze since I don't plan on making chili during the summer months. TLMM made the best cornbread recipe ever, and I mean ever- and that will be my next post!

Veggies, after all the chopping.

Place 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil into large pot over medium-high heat. Add onions, peppers (including jalepeno), garlic and beef and brown until the onions are translucent, about 10 minutes (all of the times in this post will be more if you double the recipe). Add the tomatoes, salt and chili powder. Wait for it to boil and then partially cover it and turn it down to a simmer, stirring once in a while. Now leave it alone at a simmer for 1 1/2 hours. Add beans and bring back to a boil. The recipe says it can be eaten now or left to simmer. I let it cook for another couple of hours.

This chili is so good because the flavors - first you taste the beef, chili powder and the beans and then the peppers start creeping in. The addition of the tenderloin added a layer of texture reminiscent of chili con carne.   We garnished with grated sharp cheddar cheese, chopped onion and cooked some white rice as an afterthought.  We froze what we didn't eat because no matter how good it is on day one, for some reason, chili is always better after a deep freeze. Now I feel more comfortable tweaking the recipe even more, maybe with a different type of protein to really mix things up. Before the weather gets too warm, put on a pot of chili. It will make your house smell divine and will keep in the freezer until you are ready for some more...and the eggs.


Anonymous said...

This looks great!

Claudia said...

It certainly gets chilly enough in Minneapolis for chili! This looks scrumptious. Come up here and beat the heat!