Here's a basic chili recipe to pass on to your friends (or kids) who are just learning to cook. It's an easy recipe for kids to cook (with supervision, of course) and it was perfect for a warm up the house project today. This weather would be fun and exciting if it were not April 4th ... but it IS April 4th and this snow has crushed all the crocus and the first daffodils and frozen the little wood hyacinths solid. And that's all I will say on this snow day ... except that the chili is darn good for lunch! I had mine with oyster crackers to crunch with each bite. Gnashing of teeth here ...
Three Bean Chili
1 1/2 lb. ground beef, pork, or venison
1 large onion, small dice
3 tbsp. canola oil
1 medium green pepper, seeded, small dice
1 tbsp. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. cayenne powder
1 tsp. cocoa powder
1 jalapeno pepper, minced seeds and veins too
1 - 14.oz can fire-roasted tomatoes
1- 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
1- 14 oz can black beans, well drained
1- 14 oz. can navy beans, well drained
1- 14 oz. can red kidney beans, well drained
2 tbsp. tomato paste mixed with water used to rinse the cans of tomatoes ... whisk well to break up the paste
Making the Chili:
1. In a heavy Dutch oven or a slow-cooker, heat the cooking oil and add the onions and green peppers. Sauté until glistening.
2. Add the ground meat that's been broken into bite-sized chunks and brown well.
3. Add the spices and mix well, cooking the spices for a minute or two to release their essence.
4. Add the tomatoes, paste and water and stir well. Bring the mix to a bubbling simmer.
5. Add the beans and stir them in. Cover and place the Dutch oven in a slow oven (225 degrees F) or set the slow cooker to 'low setting' and timer to 4 hours. Walk away and let things simmer well.
6. Stir every so often and gauge moisture. Add some stock if you think you need a goopier chili.
7. Serve with crusty bread, oyster crackers or with a mound of grated cheese atop