Homemade Chili

Tonight I decided to try my hand at homemade chili. I’ve made veggie chili before but not really a meaty one and that was the craving today. So I started with the Basic Chili recipe from America’s Test Kitchen (it’s in my cookbook, but I can’t find it on the website), and then added my own twist. Here’s how it went together:

  • 1.5 pounds of lean ground beef
  • 1 onion
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 poblano pepper
  • 1 Anaheim chile
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 can of diced tomato
  • 1 small can of tomato paste
  • 1 can of kidney beans
  • Chili powder
  • Cumin
  • Oregano
  • Red pepper flakes
  • 2 Chipotle peppers in Adobo sauce
  • 2 tbs of maple syrup
First I chopped the onion and sauteed it in a bit of olive oil. (I seasoned with salt and pepper after every major ingredient went in.) Then I added all of the peppers and seasonings to toast in the oil. Then I added the garlic and tomato paste to concentrate the flavors. Next I added half of the ground meat and cooked until it started to brown, then I added the second half. After the meat was no longer pink, I stirred in the tomatoes and the rinsed kidney beans. Bring to a boil, then turn heat down to low and simmer with the lid on for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Then remove the lid and cook for another hour, add liquid if it starts to stick to the bottom of the pot. Toward the end I started to feel like the flavors needed to deepen and be a bit smokier, so I added the minced chipotles in Adobo and the maple syrup, which really seemed to round out the chili nicely and helped kick up the spice a bit. I will also note that you need to add quite a bit of chili powder, probably near 1/4 of a cup, but I added it throughout the cooking process and kept tasting along the way.
Christopher thinks that this would be a good recipe for leftover brisket. I’ll have to remember that.

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