Thursday, September 30, 2004

Not Famous Yet Chili

Tonight I am taking my "famous" chili to the World Hunger dinner/meeting at church. Since that is what I'm doing, I thought I would just post the recipe here. I got this recipe from a young man I met when I worked at a large advertising agency in Chicago. He was a folk singer who sang in the Chicago folk scene at night and worked as a copywriter for his day job. I don't remember his name, but I do remember that he moved to Salt Lake City, which I still think is very strange. He gave me a very large original painting of Ray Charles when he left. I have been using his recipe for chili ever since, and have had nothing but good reviews. Here it is:

1 1/2 lb. lean hamburger
1 lb. sausage (either hot Italian, sweet Italian, or your choice, very well drained)
1 large white onion, chopped
1 large green pepper, chopped
1 large red pepper chopped
4 cloves fresh garlic, chopped fine
1 small jalapeno pepper, (wear gloves) deveined, de-seeded and chopped fine
1 large can tomato puree
1 small can tomato sauce
1 large can chopped tomatoes, more if you want chili to be less chunky.
(add all the juices from the tomatoes)
2 T. cumin (to taste)
2 T. chili powder (to taste)
2 large cans kidney beans, drained well and rinsed
1 T. olive oil
Chipolte flavored (or plain if you prefer) Tabasco sauce

Brown the meat. At the end of the browning process, add the chopped garlic. Do not burn the garlic, and drain off fats. In separate pan, brown the onion and peppers in 1 T. olive oil until translucent. Put these ingredients in a large heavy pot. Add tomatoes, sauce, puree, cumin, chili powder, and salt and pepper to taste. I also add a few drops of Chipolte flavored Tabasco sauce. Cook over slow heat for 1 hour. Add kidney beans and 1 T. of olive oil. Cook until beans are hot, but not mushy, about another 1/2 hour. (If you want the chili to be three-alarm, just add another finely chopped jalapeno pepper. That will call out the fire department.)

Serve with oyster crackers, crusty Italian bread, shredded cheddar cheese, and extra hot sauce for those who want it really hot.

This is not Texas chili, it is probably Cleveland chili, or something like that. works for me, and people always love it.

I finally sold my unread 1001 Chili Recipes book along with the painting of Ray Charles at a barn sale a few years ago.

Happy chili!