Monday, November 7, 2011

Best Chili EVER.

Sometimes I look into my spice cabinet and get completely overwhelmed by the sheer quantity of tiny glass jars sitting there.  How did I get so many?  And how in the world am I ever going to use them all up?  That is when I pull out the big guns - awesome, spice-heavy chili.  A batch of this deliciousness will serve a couple purposes:

1. It'll make you look like a chili-contest-winning, super-duper-amazing cook
2. It'll help you work through your never-ending rows of spices... so you can... well, buy more.

This is some seriously tasty chili.  I discovered the original recipe a few years ago at and made just a few minor tweaks (most notably, a big increase in bacon!).  It takes awhile to simmer, but the effort is so worth it.  Make sure you are using a BIG pot - this will feed a crowd! 

Best Chili EVER.
Yield: 16 bowls of goodness (freezes/reheats well)

2 pounds ground beef
1 pound bulk Italian sausage (or links with casing removed)
3 (15oz) cans of beans (I use a mix of black, kidney, and cannelini beans)
1 (15oz) can of chili/pinto beans in spicy sauce
2 (28oz) cans diced tomatoes with juice (fire-roasted, if you can find them!)
1 (6oz) can tomato paste
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
2 red bell peppers, seeded and finely chopped
1 can roasted green chilies 
3-4 slices of cooked bacon, crumbled
1 Tbsp + 1 tsp Beef Better then Bouillon (can substitute bouillon cubes)
1/2 cup beer
1/4 cup chili powder
2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 Tbsp dried oregano
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp hot pepper sauce (Tabasco)
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp sugar

Garnish with:
Corn chips (Fritos) and shredded cheese

Heat a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Cook ground beef and sausage until evenly browned.  Drain off excess grease.

Pour in beans, tomatoes and tomato paste.

Add all remaining ingredients and stir to blend.

Simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally, for at least 2 hours.

After 2 hours, taste and adjust salt, pepper, and chili powder, if needed. 

Serve with fritos, shredded cheese, and cornbread!

Oh, yeah, and sorry for the lack of photos. Chili isn't really the most photogenic food out there, you know? 

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