The chili debate will never be settled. Where did it originate? Should chili contain beans or no beans? What spices are used in a pot of chili? It does not really matter in the big picture of life.
Chili is not so much a food recipe as it is a state of mind. Thoughts of chili can transport us to cold winter nights warming our souls with a steaming hot bowl of the red stuff. It can conjure up images of mesquite campfires, cowboys in boots and long horse-ridden journeys on dusty trails. The beauty of chili recipes is you can put anything you want into the pot, spice it up or spice it down, add cheese or no cheese.
You are the ruler of the recipe. Just make sure it has some loving in it and share it with those you care about. Soul inspired cooking!
Beef Chili with Black Beans and Sweet Peppers
1 pound ground beef
3 cloves garlic crushed
1 medium onion diced finely
2 sweet red peppers seeded and diced
2 large carrots peeled and diced
4 stalks of celery diced
1 can (28 oz.) diced tomatoes
1 can (19 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cans (10 oz.) tomato soup
1 can (14 oz.) pork and beans
1 can (19 oz.) red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 tbsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cumin
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
¼ cup fresh cilantro finely chopped
1 tbsp. lime juice
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
In a heavy large pot, sauté the ground beef over medium high heat, breaking up with a wooden spoon until no longer pink. Drain off all the fat, return to the same pot add the garlic, onions, red peppers, carrots and celery and sauté until vegetables are softened. Add the diced tomatoes, black beans, tomato soup, pork and beans and the red kidney beans then bring the mixture to a boil. Add the chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes until thickened enough to mound on a spoon. Stir in the lime juice and cilantro. Serve in small bowls sprinkle with the cheddar cheese and serve with baking powder twists on the side.
Baking Powder Parmesan Twists
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
¼ cup melted unsalted butter
2 cups flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
⅓ cup vegetable shortening
1-cup whole milk
Heat oven to 450°F
Place the melted butter and Parmesan cheese on separate plates and set aside.
In a large bowl combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Cut in the vegetable shortening until coarse crumbs form, add the milk and stir with a fork until sticky dough forms. Place the dough on a well-floured surface and knead with floured hands 8 to 10 times until the dough is not sticky and holds together. Pat into a 9-inch square then cut 16 strips about ½ inch in width.
Working with one strip at a time, dip the strip into the melted butter, and then roll in the Parmesan cheese. Twist the strip 3 to 4 times and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake 12 to 14 minutes until golden brown. Cool slightly and serve.