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HMc: Chilly Enough for Chili!

It is finally cold enough for chili!  Hooray!  I could eat chili anytime of the year, but my husband only likes me to make it when it’s really good and cold out.  So sometime in the winter I’ll make a huge batch and freeze individual servings so that I can have chili in the summer.
I know there are two schools of thought on chili:  with beans and without beans.  I am a member of the “with-beans” school.  In my opinion chili without beans is just chunky spaghetti sauce.  My step-daughters mom makes an amazing chili without beans that I absolutely love, though.  Her chili is more like a thick soup, whereas mine is more like a chunky chip dip.  That is the wonderful thing about chili though.  Everybody has their own different version:  with beans or without, lots of jalapenos or none, ground beef or ground turkey.  There is no one set-in-stone recipe for chili.  It’s kind of like mac-and-cheese . . . a blank canvas for variations.
This is my recipe for chili.  The first time I ever made chili I googled “chili recipe” and made it and it was yummy.  Then I googled the recipe for Wendy’s chili.  I made that and it was yummy as well.  My recipe is sort of a mish-mash of those two recipes and some variations of my own.  Feel free to alter this recipe to make it your own as well.
2 lbs ground beef; browned and drained
1 large white onion; diced
2 stalks of celery; diced
1 4-oz can diced green chilies
1 29-oz can tomato sauce
2 15-oz cans pinto beans; drained and rinsed
2 15-oz cans kidney beans; drained and rinsed
2 14-oz cans diced tomatoes w/ chili seasoning
2 10-oz cans Rotel seasoned diced tomatoes w/ green chilies
3 tbls chili powder
1 ½ tsp black pepper
2 tsp salt
Combine all ingredients in a large pot and simmer until hot, stirring frequently
Combine all ingredients in a large slow-cooker until it’s hot all the way through and you are ready to eat.
I like to leave this on low in my slow-cooker all afternoon, especially on a really cold day.  It makes the house smell so delicious.  I have a really big slow-cooker but this recipe with totally fill it up.  So be forewarned that if you go that route you may want to keep a towel nearby because my slow-cooker “spits” sometimes. 
The measurements for the chili powder, black pepper and salt are approximate.  I never measure those.  I put a little bit in the pot, stir and taste.  If it needs more I add more.
The beans in the recipe are just what I used the day I wrote the recipe down.  Sometimes I will use all kidney beans, sometimes I use black beans.  Pick your favorites.
I serve this will a little diced white onion and shredded cheddar cheese on top, and cornbread on the side.  I have no fancy cornbread recipe.  I’m a Jiffy girl.  My husband likes to eat his chili with tortilla chips.
Chili is also really yummy served on top of spaghetti noodles . . . like a chunky spaghetti sauce.  Hey, if Steak-n-Shake can do it then so can I.
I hope you enjoy your chili.  Imagine an afternoon spent outside building snowmen and then coming back inside to a house filled with the scent of hot, hearty chili.  Yum!  I can’t wait to make it this weekend!
If you have a favorite recipe I would love to hear it.  Feel free to share it with me.  My email is heathermc@forevercomm.com, or you can send it to me on facebook:  www.facebook.com/heather.mcribbits.  I look forward to hearing from you.
Until we meet again, have a hoppy day!

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12/28/2012 1:01PM
HMc: Chilly Enough for Chili!
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