Sunday, February 16, 2014

Chili for Dinner

A favorite dinner for my family is chili and grilled cheese and it's of the easiest dinners to make. Today my husband called me and asked what we were having for dinner - this is very common and he's passing this on to our son. Just last week while we were finishing dinner my son looked up and asked what we were going to have the following night. I stared at my husband and said like father, like son. Can we finish one dinner first?

Well anyway, my recipe for chili is so easy and while I like to have the chili simmer for at least 45 minutes, it doesn't need to in order to eat.

I gather all of my ingredients - the mason jar is filled with chili sauce already prepared. In the summer we juiced the tomatoes from the garden and added in the chili seasoning before we sealed the jars. 

The petite diced tomatoes with jalepenos, the chili beans, and chili sauce are added into the pot.

At some point, I was told that if you add canned beans to anything you cook, drain the juice off because it helps to prevent beans being that magical fruit. :) I have no idea if there is any truth in it but I drain it off.

Now I add in my seasonings: pepper, lots of cayenne, chili powder if needed, and sometimes I add in red pepper flakes. Oh and just a little parsley.

While I'm adding everything to the chili pot, I start to brown the ground beef and add pepper. We generally buy 1/4 or 1/2 a beef directly from a butcher so I have no idea how lean it is. 

And because I don't know how lean or fatty the beef is, I do something that I would assume chefs and great cooks would scream NOOOO about and that's….yes…I rinse the ground meat. You read that correctly, I rinse it. My family probably isn't aware that I do this but they've never complained that the beef lacks flavor, so I feel like I'm in the clear.

 Add your rinsed beef to the chili pot and simmer until you reach your desired taste.

My husband adds shredded colby jack cheese to his bowl and then pairs it with a grilled cheese. As for our son, well he dips his grilled cheese into the chili so he doesn't always add more cheese, and even with the spice, he loves it. 

While eating dinner tonight my husband mentioned that I'll need to share my recipe with our daughter when she gets older. I responded that I actually don't have a precise recipe, I know the color I need to achieve in the pot and know what it should taste like. He laughed and said well then you can just make it for her and deliver it. We have a loooong way until I ever need to worry about that, which I am thankful for, but when that time does come, I want to make and deliver. Or possibly just teach her "my way" and then have her experiment with "her way."

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