Warm up with Craig Allen’s favorite Chili (recipe)
Is it cold enough for you, New Jersey?
Earlier this week, Bill Spadea was talking about hearty, warm soup (check it out here)
To that, I offer my favorite chili recipe.
You will like it. Bill will like it.
It's warm and "meaty."
Besides, how can you go wrong with a recipe that calls for a bottle of beer? And...chocolate?
Let's get started...You need:
2 & 1/2 lb lean chuck, ground (hamburger).
1 lb lean pork, ground.
Like with the beef, brown the pork in a large pan.
Once cooked, put the meat in a large pot.
1 C finely chopped...
4 cloves finely chopped garlic (NOTE: 1/2 t = 1 clove garlic).
The recipe calls for (1) 8 oz can of tomato sauce (I usually go with a 16 oz can of tomato sauce....I like more tomato flavor).
1 C water (fresh from the tap).
Next, the secret ingredient you've been waiting for:
What, you've never heard the term "barley pop?" It goes back to my college years at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
1 barley pop = 1 can/bottle of beer (12 oz).
Now, give everything a good stir...
...because, here comes more "dry works."
3 Tablespoons chili powder.
2 Tablespoons instant beef bouillon (or 6 cubes).
2 Tablespoons ground cumin.
2 teaspoons paprika.
Are you still stirring your chili? EXCELLENT.
2 teaspoons oregano leaves.
2 teaspoons sugar.
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander.
1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa.
While the original recipe doesn't call for chili beans, I believe that chili just isn't chili without any beans...
So, I add 2 cans (any variety) of beans (drain off the liquid).
Finally, add 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce (or more if you like your chili HOT, and I do!).
FYI, I didn't add any this time, as the rest of my family is a bunch of wimps when it comes to food with "heat."
Still with me?
Bring this AWESOME chili to a boil.
Now, turn down the heat, and let your chili simmer for somewhere between 1-2 hours.
You may want to cover the chili while it simmers...I leave the lid off, and let it cook down a little more (After all, I doubled the tomato sauce).
Why such a range in simmer times? I let it simmer for close to 2 hours when I used my favorite old metal pot.
Now, that I use a dutch oven (which holds heat better and longer), I find that 1 hour is fine.
IMPORTANT: If you are multitasking while your chili simmers...give it a good stir every 10 minutes or so...so that it doesn't burn on the bottom of the pot.
If your finished chili is (still) too "liquidy"...
If you want to (further) thicken the chili, in a small bowl, stir together:
1 teaspoon cornmeal
1 teaspoon flour
1 teaspoon warm water
Stir into chili, and cook (covered) for an additional 20 minutes.
NOTE: I've never found the need for this final step.
Enjoy your warm, meaty, hearty, new favorite, chili.
Sprinkle some grated cheese on top...or some sour cream.
Got nachos (tortilla chips)? Use a chip as a spoon.