Winter sucks. I’m over it. Yes, winter is great if you can spend your time skiing, skating and making snow angles but as a woman on the go in a big city, I don’t have time for that! Sometimes I don’t even feel like going outside to get groceries but I do it anyway because I’m dedicated to my craft.
I don’t care what any one says, but chili is one of the BEST things to eat on a cold and frosty night. (French onion soup is good too…which will be on my next blog…) I’ve make many o’ chili in my day and I wanted to jazz it up by adding more veg for added crunch and more beans for added fibre. Chili doesn’t have to be a big ol’ pile of meat sauce. It can be something nutritious and interesting.
Julia’s two bean beef chili
2 onions, chopped
2 celery stalks, peeled and chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 can crushed tomato
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 pound lean ground beef
1 cup beef broth
1/4 cup chili powder
cumin, fennel seeds, smoked paprika, red pepper flakes (about 1 tbsp each, or to taste)
salt and pepper
In a dutch oven or heavy pot with lid, drizzle olive oil and cook onions over medium heat for about 6 minutes. Add garlic, celery and carrot; sauté for 3 minutes. Add beef and sauté until brown, breaking it up with a spoon, 5 minutes. Add all of your spices, then mix in the crushed tomatoes, beans and broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer, stirring occasionally for 45 minutes to an hour.
HOT TIP: If you make this in a slow cooker, I suggest sautéing the onion, veg and beef mixture first then dumping everything into the slow cooker and setting it on low for 5-6 hours and high for 3-4.
Ladle into nice big bowls and top with greek yogurt (or sour cream), green onion, grated cheese and fresh parsley. (extra red pepper flakes if you need more kick!)
Girrrrrrl this was a nice chili. I LOVE that I put celery and carrot in there because it gave the dish much needed texture. The secret ingredient here is probably the fennel seed. I just put them in whole, because they soften up in the cooking process. Fennel seed add a sausage like quality to the meat and I cook with it a lot. It takes this chili to a whole new level. Oh, and I forgot to mention that I served it on leftover rice! You don’t have to do this, but I had rice in the fridge that I didn’t want to go to waste. It makes this dish VERY hearty.
If you don’t eat red meat, try ground chicken or turkey. Vegetarian? Use veggie ground round and veg stock instead. If you don’t like black beans, use white beans. It’s a choose your own adventure chili!
Also, if you’re one of those people who is hesitant about spice, only add half the spices, taste it about 30 minutes in, and then add the other half if need be. The last thing I want is for you to be unhappy with your meal. Have you seen some of the comments on online recipes? People can be ruthless idiots. There’s always one person who posts something like this:
“I tried you chili recipe because of all the good reviews but my family found it to be WAY too spicy. My infant couldn’t even eat it! Also, celery in chili? If I wanted a salad, I’d be a rabbit. Also, I didn’t have crushed tomatoes so I added ketchup instead because I’m not the brightest crayon in the box. Anyway, off to mouth breath in public!” -sassymom44
Right?! So don’t be like sassymom44 and use the measurements as a guide. We all have slightly different palettes. And DO NOT put ketchup in the chili or I will find you and make sure you never cook again. (ok, that sounded way too intense…)
Anyway, thanks for eating with me! Stay tuned for more blogs this week. I’ve been cooking up a ton of hot winter meals to keep you warm this week. And remember…it’s chilly, eat chili!