Source: Me: cir. 2000’s
Fall's Best Chili
Chili is a long standing tradition in the U.S. usually on or around the time of Fall and Halloween. Who knew that The Lone Star state (Texas) would ever aim at inspiring the world more over than with this dish of beans, meat and lots of spices. But in fact it did. Not only is chili the official main dish of Texas, but the popularity of chili has made it to the European part of the world too...and not just on my account. Yes, Texas did bring good to the culinary world, and it even made it's mark in California. Every year my sister cooks up a big pot, my good child-hood friend throws a huge chili bash, and now since living far away from my chili invites, I now do it on my own. I usually make 2 large stock pots with chili. In one pot is chili with pork, and the other is chili with beef. Always cooked with generous amounts of spices and herbs, it's a dish that brings us all together and reminds us how much we love this time of year. Toppers matter here. Get some options flowing, because it's not chili with out the toppers.
- 2-3 lbs ground meat for pork chili, 2-3 lbs of pork italian sausage, or ground pork
- 4-5 cups cooked beans (pinto, kidny, black) soak beans night before
- 2 onions diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 4 cups bouillon
- 3-4 cans diced tomatoes
- 1 can tomato paste
- 2-3 TBS paprika, cumin, and cayenne keep the amounts equal, or use a bit less cayenne if spicy isn't desired.
Begin the night before by soaking your dry beans in a large pot overnight.
In the morning, drain and cook beans for 15 minutes in a pressure cooker. When finished cooking, set aside, leaving the beans soaking in the liquid, and use when ready to add.
Dice your onions, and garlic and sautee
Get your spices selected and ready. I always work with cumin, paprika and cayenne.
Add the spices, meat (of choice) and tomato paste to the sauteed onions and garlic. Mix all together and let the meat cook (about 5-10 min).
Next, add your tomatoes and bouillon and cook until it begins to boil. Keep it on a high to medium cook for a good 15 minutes, then gradually turn the heat down to a low simmer. Put the lid on, and let the magic begin. I think the longer you let it simmer, the more the flavors blend, thus creating a rich color, and an unforgettable flavor. Give it a good 5-6 hours on the lowest temperature, stirring occasionally.
When your chili reaches a nice, dark red color you know it's ready to serve.
Scoop it in a nice bowl, dress and enjoy.
have little bowls set out for everyone to grab and dress with what they want. I always have: grated cheddar, sour cream, avocado, frito corn chips, hot spices, diced onions, cilantro, black olives...oh so many possibilities.