Friday, November 21, 2008

Making Chili

We had snow unexpectedly last night, and it made us want chili. The problem is that you can't make chili at 6pm and expect to eat at a decent time. So I'm making slow chili today (we have fast chili, too, but it still takes over an hour). I started cooking around 1pm, and I expect we'll have dinner around 6pm. I'm a little apprehensive about this batch. It's been a bit of an ordeal.

I started at 12:30pm by not remembering what we usually put in chili. I don't seem to have a written recipe. I thought I'd blogged about it, but did a search and only found a vague list of ingredients. So, I hope that it even tastes right when dinnertime gets here.

My first step was to complain about how much I hate cooking meat, and then to call my hubby and complain that he didn't cook it for me last night. He apologized, and said to make the chili and we'll add the meat when he gets home. Yea! I hate cooking meat, especially ground meat and especially with a toddler underfoot (for the record, we use Laura's lean ground beef - 8% fat this time).

Next I sauted the onions. I thought I'd use a little canola oil, but I poured too much. So I soaked up some of the oil, and them over-browned the onions (not burned - I hope).

Added a little chopped fresh garlic (one clove).

Added a jumbo can of mild chili beans. Noted a dry consistency in the beans. Hope they'll soak up some of the tomato juice and be ok. Noted high fructose corn syrup is high on ingredient list. (In moderation, my foot.)

Added can of dark red kidney beans after draining and rinsing them of the high fructose corn syrup. It must be dark red for me. I like the color contrast.

Added a can of Rotel and can of organic diced tomatoes (same price as regular this time). Wondered why I don't can my own tomatoes for chili, soup and spaghetti since we have SO many tomatoes each summer.

Added a large can of crushed tomatoes, and immediated recognized it as a mistake. Too much tomato, and too mushy. Hope no one notices.

Added a packet of Chili-O seasoning. Added Chili powder.

Added cumin, a little extra because of the massive quantity of tomatoes. Cumin smells icky to me, but I can acknowledge that it does help the flavor of chili.

Added secret ingredients of cocoa and cinnamon. Hubby insists this makes it Cincinnati chili which I thought required spaghetti. I'm a Southern girl, and don't believe I'm making Cincinnati chili since I'm using spices native to South America, but whatever.

Let the chili simmer while playing with Abigail and then remembered I should stir it. Oops.

I haven't tried the chili yet. I'm a little afraid to ladle any out, not only because I'm holding a sleeping toddler.

Now I just need to check our supply of bread, peanut butter and saltines. I'm a fan of Premium brand crackers and oyster crackers as long as they're NOT stale. Hubby likes to accompany his chili with peanut butter bread. Abigail just likes to eat the same thing Mommy and Daddy do.

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