Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Evolution of a Chili

When we were first married, I made a simple chili that took one of everything-- so it was easy for me to remember. Here is the recipe:

1 onion
1 green pepper
1 lb of hamburger
1 can of tomatoes
1 can of kidney beans
1 tablespoon oregano
1 tablespoon chili powder

It works, but is fairly boring... particular after years of the same. So we came up with a major modification that we both love-- we add half a jar of "sweet and hot" peppers. Some brands call them salad peppers. It adds a vinegary twang. And a little sweetness. I'm sure it's not for everyone, but has become our signature and I miss it in other chilis.

And then somewhere along the line, we began having some chili discord. Ron likes whole tomatoes; I like diced or crushed. I like my green pepper in big bite-sized pieces; Ron likes them diced smaller. He likes to add garlic and three tablespoons of chili powder. I like garlic in my salsa, but not really in my chili.

Then one day, he decided that my chili sucked. I remember... he dumped a pot of my chili in the garbage.

So now, by royal decree of the Queen (you can call me "Q"), he makes all the chili.

And he's gotten really good at it. He learned to cut the peppers the right way, and we both now like a lot of green pepper and chili powder-- or cumin and cayenne if we're getting fancy. Today he put in three green peppers.

I "let" :) him use the whole tomatoes and the garlic, but he has to cut up the tomatoes some and crush and then dice only one clove of garlic. Sometimes he adds black beans. Sometimes he adds a fresh banana pepper or jalapeno if they show up in our Papa Spuds box.

But his chili must have those sweet salad peppers in there. Not that I would ever throw HIS chili in the garbage!

I've never figured out the nutritional value. I'm sure the meat adds fat and protein, the beans add fiber and protein, and the canned tomato and beans add (too much) sodium. I feel as if it's a fairly balanced meal.

I give it 4 spoons for love and satisfaction, since it is our chili and I love it and it has some history to it. I'm going to give it 4 spoons for nutrition too, until research proves otherwise. So with 8 out of 8 spoons, this makes my husband's chili the perfect soup. At least for me.

The entire pot cost about $13 and will last us about three meals. Making it the best value so far as well.

1 comment:

  1. I've never heard of salad peppers. The vinagery mix sounds great. Our chili is different every time, but always delicious. I like lots of cumin, sometimes using seed instead ground. Fennel seed adds a nice twist to the flavor.