Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A Chilly Night

Fall has finally come to Long Beach. I have been extra busy with work lately so I haven't actually experienced the outside world this week but it certainly looks chilly out there. Really any excuse will do to make the hearty, cold weather, stick to your hips, foods that I adore. Chili is one of my favorites and since I usually have all the ingredients on hand I indulge in this hefty dish more often that I wish to admit. Here is the version that I made yesterday. The recipe yields 10 generous servings but it freezes beautifully, and really doesn't chili always taste better as leftovers?

Chili with Beans
2 lbs lean hamburger
2 onions, diced
6 cloves of garlic, chopped fine
1/2 cup chili powder
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 (12 oz) bottle of beer
2 (15oz) cans pinto beans, drained
2 (15oz) cans kidney beans, drained
1 28oz can of crushed tomatoes
1 28oz can of diced tomatoes
1 or 2 dried ancho chiles*
1 tsp brown sugar

Brown the ground beef with the onion in a large dutch oven. If you have not used a lean ground beef drain off most of the fat. Add the chopped garlic and cook until softened. Then add your spices all at once and cook stirring constantly for 1 minute. Immediately add the beer, beans and tomatoes. Soak the dried ancho chile in hot water for 5 minutes. Allow all of the water to drain out of the chile then deseed, mince and add it to the pot. Cook chili for an hour. Sometimes I add another beer to the chili when it is 3/4 of the way done, it makes for a thinner chili but it tastes delightfully of beer. I like to serve this chili on its own, on top of cooked pasta, or with chips and cheese. It would be a challenge to serve it in a way that is not delightful, it's just that good!

*I am also quite fond of chipotle chiles in adobo but I only ever use 1-2 of them and it seems wasteful to open the can unless I have something in mind for the rest of the chiles. (Other than putting the them in tupperware, letting them sit in the fridge for a week and then throwing them out.) Dried chiles are an inexpensive way to keep delicious chiles on hand.


Lori Lynn said...

Gosh this would be perfect right now, no no no more Thanksgiving foods!

Nice to see you at the Foodbuzz Festival, sorry it was so short.

Hope you had an awesome Thanksgiving!

Jen said...

I froze the peppers leftover from my last can of chilis in adobo and it worked well! You can try that--break them into pairs in baggies or something, and voila, on-demand chipotle.

Simply Life said...

oh that looks great!