My daughter ran over to my neighbors house (Thanks Molly!) to get me a tomato this morning and when I opened the door I was taken aback by the wet feeling of fall. I know fall is coming… It is November after all. I can’t stop fall from arriving, but I can keep my belly full and warm with delicious Chili!
I remember the first time I made Chili in Germany. My mom had sent me Chili Powder when my brother came to visit. I never considered that Chili Powder comes in different strengths, from mild to extremely spicy! I followed the recipe and added the appropriate amount of powder. Unfortunately the chili powder my mom sent me was about 4 notches above spicy. It was unbelievable, immediately burning my lips, tongue, throat and stomach. I had to salvage dinner. After Googling solutions and adding sugar, potatoes and a whole bunch of other attempts to de-spice it, it became obvious that there would be nothing I could do to bring the heat down to an edible level. Now this doesn’t mean that no one ate it. My husband, hungry from the aromas of chili that filled our apartment all day insisted that he could handle the heat. He actually ate a whole bowl of it! I honestly have no idea how he managed to do this. Yet, for a man who usually asks for seconds, after his first bowl, he didn’t ask for another!
The chili powder I used was from McCormick’s (bought at City Shop) and not very spicy. I slowly added more powder throughout the cooking process. In the end I used the full 2 tablespoons. I advise that you do the same. Combining several different recipes, I felt that it was missing something. Initially I wasn’t planning on using canned tomatoes, but because I used fresh tomatoes, the Chili was missing that tomato bite that you get from the juices of canned tomatoes. So, in the end, I stirred in a can of plum tomatoes and reheated for 20 minutes and VOILA! The taste was spot on!
Hearty Beef & Beans Chili
- 3 Tablespoons Sunflower Oil
- 1 1/2 Cups Onions
- 2 lbs Ground Beef
- 2 dried Ancho Chilis, rehydrated in boiling water and chopped (remove seeds to decrease the heat)
- 2 cups chopped Tomatoes
- 3 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 1 1/2 cups Beef Broth or Beer
- 2 T Chili Powder, divided
- 1 T Oregano
- 1 Tablespoon Salt
- 1/2 T Smoked Paprika
- 3 cans Red Kidney Beans
- 1 can Cannellini Beans
- 1 can whole Plum Tomatoes, diced
- Green Onions, sliced
- Shredded Cheddar Cheese
- Sour Cream
- In a small saute pan, heat 2 Tablespoons of Sunflower Oil then add chopped onions. Saute the onions onmedium low heat until they’re caramelized, about 30 minutes. Set aside.
- In a large Dutch Oven or Stock Pot, heat 1 Tablespoon Sunflower Oil over medium heat. Add ground beef and cook until evenly browned, about 5-7 minutes. Drain off excess grease.
- Add caramelized onions, ancho Chilis, beans, garlic and tomatoes. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Then add beef broth, salt, oregano, paprika and ONE TABLESPOON OF CHILI POWDER. Wait a few minutes for the flavors of the spices to develop, then taste the chili, if you want to kick it up a notch add more chili powder 1/2 Tablespoon at a time. Remember to wait a few minutes before tasting the chili and adding more powder.
- When the chili begins to boil reduce heat to low, cover the Dutch Oven and let simmer for an hour.
- Once all your flavors have melded together add the beans and plum tomatoes. Return heat to add simmer on low for 40 minutes.
- Ladle chili in bowls and top with green onions, cheddar cheese and sour cream or serve over spaghetti noodles to create a delicious Chili Mac.