Chili recipes?

So as I've said before, I'm still reading through the old VC archives (working backwards in time) and I came across this comment in one thread:
Chili -- although what I find to be a "comfort food" might put some of our readers into the hospital. :)

Posted by: Grim at September 16, 2008 04:50 PM
And I suddenly was very interested to know what Grim's chili contains as I am a committed "hot head" when it comes to spicy food (or I need to be committed, one of the two).
My personal recipe is:
1.5-2 lbs meat (turkey sausage, chorizo, hot breakfast sausage... I've used all different kinds)
20 oz can diced tomatos (or an equivalent amount of hot Rotel, depending on who I'm cooking for)
5 T chili powder
2x 16 oz cans red kidney beans (rinsed)
16 oz hot salsa
1 large sweet onion
3 cloves garlic
4-6 red habaneros (again, depending on who I'm cooking for) minced

Brown the meat, cut the onion into 1/8ths, maybe saute the onions (I've been getting lazy on this recently as I'm not even sure it adds that much), throw everything in the crockpot for 4 hours on high then on low for however long you want.  It's good, hot, clears the sinuses and filling.

If you have a recipe and don't mind sharing, I'd love to hear it.


Grim said...

I make several different chili types these days, but I do have one from the era that's already posted: Grim's Buffalo Chili, from 2008. Note that this recipe leaves a lot of the choices about spiciness to you, for example recommending jalapenos or hotter as you prefer. (The hottest pepper I eat regularly is the Naga ghost pepper, but generally I prefer Scotch bonnets or habaneros; or just using even more serranos or jalapenos). It also calls for chili powder until you find the color 'threatening,' which is going to vary by individual.

There are a few basic divisions in the chilis that I make. The first one is whether the meat is browned (as in yours) or rather boiled first before anything else is added (the famous 'Deviled Beef' approach from 19th century Texas chili, which requires a fattier beef plus also lard to make it come out silky soft). The second is whether it is a meat-only chili, or whether things like beans are in it. I sometimes use whole beans, but also sometimes add only refried beans, which thickens the chili nicely.

But there are also big variations in what kinds of peppers I use. I make a green New Mexico chili (using pork instead of beef or buffalo, plus chicken broth and green New Mexico pepper powder instead of ancho-based chili powder) and a New Mexico red as well (beef, beef broth, and red New Mexico guajillo peppers are the base).

I also like to make a dried pepper chili, simulating the kind of chili you'd get on a chuck wagon where you wouldn't have access to any fresh ingredients for long stretches. This one uses dehydrated tomatoes and onions, too, for the same reason.

So if you want to try any of those, let me know and I'll type up the recipe. Not that I cook with recipes exactly; a lot of it is freehand, but I can probably work one up.

MikeD said...

I'm left indecisive with a wealth of options. How about this, which one is your spiciest? Oh, with ingredients that may be purchased in Georgia without ordering over the internet.

Texan99 said...

We use V8 instead of tomato sauce or paste.

Any peppers, dried or fresh, will do, so no need to worry about ordering on the internet.

I prefer chili meat with a coarser grind of ground beef than the usual hamburger stuff.

Donna B. said...

I do not like to use tomato sauce and I especially don't like to use tomato paste. I never thought of V8. (Didn't they have a commercial about that?)

Coarser ground meat is good and I like bison (when I can afford it).

I do not like kidney beans -- the skin is too much. I'll cook a pot of pintos separately. You can mix them if you want.

Texan99 said...

Yeah, V8 is really a lot like a well-cooked tomato sauce with lots of onions and carrots to mellow out the tomato flavor. You can even use the hot variety of V8, if you truly want to skip steps.

Gringo said...

I'm left indecisive with a wealth of options. How about this, which one is your spiciest? Oh, with ingredients that may be purchased in Georgia without ordering over the internet.

Different regions of the country have different tolerances for hot peppers, and thus also different availability of hot peppers. I am reminded of visiting relatives in Tallahassee. An Asian fusion restaurant had a Szechuan dish that was labeled HOT. It wasn't hot at all- the blandest Szechuan food I had ever eaten. I requested it hotter. They didn't have anything to make it hotter. The Florida panhandle isn't Texas, where hot peppers are a common part of household meals, regardless of ethnicity.

If there is a Mexican grocery store nearby, you could probably get some hot stuff.

Fruits and/or chocolate go well with hot peppers. Ditto peanut butter- like the Thais.

Grim said...

There is a Mexican grocery store nearby. I’m pretty sure that is true anywhere in Georgia now.

Grim said...

How about this, which one is your spiciest?

Any of them can be as spicy as you want; you just have to spice it the way you like it. Add in some ghost pepper or whatever if it's not hot enough for you yet; I keep the stuff on hand to spice up things when I really want a kick, but I have to cook less hot for my poor long-suffering wife.

Tell you what. Just because it's different from what you've seen, and you can get the stuff at your local Mexican store, try a "Deviled Beef" with the dehydrates. For your pepper/chili mix, go down and buy a few packs each of the following (bring cash, as they don't all do electric transactions; and don't go on Friday, because that's when they're busy cashing checks for the laborers and the line will be quite long):

* Chili de Arbol molida ("molida" means "ground" -- you definitely want the powder versions if you can get them, because preparing them from dried peppers is time-consuming and requires a good blender to get it fine enough to use). These are sometimes called "bird's eye chili."
* Chili Chipotle molida, which might be labeled "Morita" (which is the less-smoked of the two grades of chipotles, which are all red jalapenos that have been cured by smoking).
* Chili Ancho, molida if you can get it. These are dried poblanos.

Start with two pounds of ground beef, 80/20, chili grind (the coarse grind the ladies were discussing). Put it in a cast iron dutch oven with a lid. Add lard, about half a cup; cover with water, and put on to boil with the lid on. Bring it to a boil and then simmer for an hour or so until the beef is very tender. This will take about an hour.

While it's boiling, prepare your 'dry' mix. Mix another half tablespoon or so of lard with an ounce of ancho chili pepper powder or more as you like, quite a bit of garlic powder. Add dehydrated onions (you can get these at Walmart quite cheaply), enough to make 2 onions or more as you prefer. Add half an ounce or so of the chili de Arbol, or more if you like, and chipotle as you like it. Arbol adds heat, chipotle adds some heat and some nice smoky flavor. Add water as necessary to mix this into a thick, dark paste.

When the beef is tender, salt it, add all of the paste you just made, plus cumin (a teaspoon? More? Less? Depends on how much you like cumin). Let it cook together for a while and then taste it to see how much more garlic powder you might want to add, as well as to get a sense of whether it's hot enough for you yet. If not, just add more of each of the chilies in the same proportion (2 parts ancho to 1 part each Arbol and chipotle). Add more of any of the other spices as you wish; it's your chili.

This is a meat-only chili that should be a good bowl by itself, or good as a filler for tacos and the like. If you serve it in a bowl you can top it with fresh chopped onions and jalapenos, serranos, habaneros or hotter. If you put it in something, you can garnish with whatever your favorite pepper sauce is.

Grim said...

Oh while you’re there you can probably get guajillo peppers, ground by great preference. That’ll let you make the New Mexican red stuff later. The green version is harder to find.

Grim said...

Oh, I left out dehydrated tomatoes. You can get these as “sun dried tomatoes.” We have a dehydrator that I bought at a surplus store. Add them at the stage in which you’re cooking everything together, as much as you want. It’ll be fine with no tomato flavor, but make it as strong as you like.

Ymar Sakar said...

Got me a ghost pepper once. It felt about 7 out of 10 on spicy. Halapenos are like 3 of 10.

Mexican peppers maybye 5 or 4 of 10.

Spicy is my food culture. It is for those with fire element in theiyr vedic natal chart. Transforms, unblocks, goes through. Perfect to clear out the workd deep state.

Ymar Sakar said...

Hot numbing sauce is what real szechuan food culture is based on.

I als find it intreresting all the humans here have high tolerance for spice. All that i have seenso far

Are they navigators?

Grim said...

My sister sent me a jar of 85% pure Naga ghost pepper paste last year. I thought it was legitimately hot. I gave some to a younger relative of mine to try, and he was screaming so hard that he couldn’t drink the milk he had. The airflow was causing it to fail to enter his mouth.

So, you know, some people are different. But I have also noticed that the more I eat of any particular pepper, the less it affects me. The first time I had Scotch bonnets I thought they were way hotter than habaneros, but they aren’t in terms of capsaicin. Now I don’t find them all that hot at all. Sriracha seemed hot to me the first time I ate it, but not anymore.

Grim said...

Now if you like hot wings, last week I made a couple of different sauces. One was a ghost pepper and chipotle BBQ, and the other was a Scotch bonnet curry mixed with regular Buffalo hot sauce.

Ymar Sakar said...

Yes, the senses build up a tolerance. Same for caffeine and toxins. Ninjas ate small amounts of toxic plants, thus gaining resistance as adults.

Ymar Sakar said...

Also spice makes head sweat. Good against what humans call viruses.

MikeD said...

I personally hate jalapenos. And there's always some wise acre who asks "can't handle the heat, huh?" I just don't like the taste of them. Especially compared to habaneros which are sweet and delicious. I've tried making asian stir fry with habaneros and the taste is fine, just... not what it should be. I've been trying to source bird's eye chilis to grow (as they should grow well in my area of Georgia), but they're a bear to find. I can get seeds, but those are notoriously hard to germinate unless you can get them to pass through the GI tract of a bird first.

Fruits and/or chocolate go well with hot peppers. Ditto peanut butter- like the Thais.

As I well know! I've even made a Thai (inspired) chili using peanut butter as a base. It actually worked out really well, you just can't leave it overnight in the crockpot as it will break down (which is a new chili experience for me). But it was really good over rice noodles. I've also had peanut butter and chili ice cream. That was outstanding.

Grim, that's a LOT of lard in the chili recipe! This isn't a complaint, just very surprising. It doesn't make the chili "oily"? My mother's pie crust calls for flour, a block of lard, and like 1-2 T of cold water, so trust me, I'm good with lard.

On the topic of Mexican grocery stores... I actually think there is one in my area, but I've never been. Sounds like it's time to try. I'll look for the ground chilis on your recommendation, but whole chilis would work too, as I have a mortar and pestle, and am not afraid of grinding my own.

Grim said...

You can put less lard if you want. Instead of making chili paste, you could just add the spices to the boiled beef. You do need the first part of lard (or you can substitute suet for either/both) to soften the beef.

Unknown said...

I make mine with smoked brisket and Guinness.

And no beans or any other filler.