The Best Chili Recipe, Hints & Videos
Chili can be made two basic ways: with meat or without. Traditional Texas Chili is made without beans and is an homage to the cowboy days when meals had to be cheap and filling. Chili con carne is the type of chili most people are familiar with and includes ground or chunks of beef. Both varieties get their name from the main ingredient of chili peppers. Easy to dry and transport, they added flavor to even the most basic cowboy dish.
These days, chili has become a popular and easy to prepare dish. Made in a big pot on the stove or slow cooked in a crock pot, it only takes a side of corn bread to become a complete meal. Chili is also a great base and gets added nutrition from adding noodles, crackers, cheese and onions. But no matter how you like your chili, there's no denying that everyone loves it.
Chili with Beans
A little bit of beer gives this crockpot chili an added flavor.
1 lb. mixed dry beans
1 lb. lean ground beef
1 lb. stew meat, cut into small chunks
1 large sweet onion, quartered
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 6 oz. can tomato paste
1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes
4 Tbs. chili powder
1 12 oz can lager beer (optional) you may use water or tomato juice instead
Hot sauce to taste
Place beans in a large stock pot and cover with water. Allow beans to soak for several hours. Meanwhile brown ground beef; stew meat, onion and garlic in a large skillet. Drain excess fat and set aside. Rinse and drain water from soaked beans and place in a large pot and cover with 6 C. of water. Cook over low to medium heat for about 1 hour. Place meat mixture in a crock-pot with cooked beans. Add tomato paste, diced tomatoes, chili powder, beer and hot sauce to the pot and simmer for several hours before serving. You can adjust the heat in the recipe with both the chili powder and the hot sauce. Some chili powders come with added ground hot pepper that can really spice up this dish. Other options are to use regular chili powder and supplement it with some ground hot pepper or to float a couple of dried whole hot peppers in the chili as it cooks.
Regional Chili Recipe
2 lbs. beef chuck, cut into ½" cubes, all white removed
1 small onion, chopped fine
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and black pepper to taste
Water or beef broth
2-3 Tbs. chili powder, Adams preferred
1 Tbs. ground cumin
1 8-oz. can tomato sauce
2 Tbs. flour or cornmeal
1/2 C. water
In a heavy skillet, sauté the meat in a small amount of oil or shortening until it is gray and gives up its juices. Transfer the meat to a crockpot. Sauté lightly the onion and garlic, salt and black pepper to taste. Add to crock pot. Add enough water or beef broth to come 1/2 way up the meat. Put in the spices and tomato sauce dry. If the chili is not spicy enough for your taste, add a small amount of cayenne. Cover and cook 8 - 10 hours. Add flour or cornmeal to pot to thicken. If the chili is too dry, add a little more beef broth, if too watery, turn on high and remove cover and let dry out to desired consistency.
More Regional Chili Recipes:
Chili Recipe Hints & Videos