We love chili. Enough said, really.
The weather has finally turned and Fall is in the air. While the rain and gloomy weather is not good for the wine grapes, it is chili weather.
There are so many versions of chili out there. At our house, we prefer chili without beans, the real way to make chili, he-he. However, I love Cincinnati chili with all of its 3-way and 4-way styles. Yum.
I have to admit, my chili changes a little bit each time, based on the amount of meat I have or what chili powders I have. However, the overall style does not change. This chili is great by itself or poured over things like hot dogs and burgers or even chili fries. Okay, chili fries sound good right about now.
Chili ~ My Way
3-1/2 – 4 pounds ground chuck (coarse grind if your butcher will do it for you)
2 Tablespoons season salt
2 Tablespoons peanut oil
3 cups chicken broth, low sodium
10 oz can Ro-tel
6 oz can tomato paste
7 Tablespoons chili powder
1 Tablespoon cumin
1 packet Sa-són*
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground oregano
1.5 oz dark chocolate (70 percent)
In a large bowl, season ground chuck with season salt and mix well with your hands. Place meat back in the refrigerator for about an hour to let flavors meld.
In a small bowl. combine chili powder, cumin, oregano, Sa-són and pepper. Set aside.
Using your Dutch oven or other chili pot, brown ground chuck over medium-high heat in peanut oil. Add broth, tomato paste and Ro-tel; bring to a simmering-boil. Add half of the combined seasonings to the pot and mix well. Cover and simmer over low heat for one hour. Add the rest of the spices and continue to simmer, covered, for another hour. Add dark chocolate, stirring it in as it melts.
Garnish with sour cream, tomato and green onion. Cheese would be good too.
Chili always tastes better the next day or when made earlier in the day and is left to rest and then reheated.
*Sa-són is a spice blend I have been using for years. It adds flavor and color to chili, meats and even rice. It can be found in the hispanic section of your grocery store (maybe) or can be purchased online. This will not make or break your chili. If you leave it out, try adding 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander and 1/2 teaspoon tumeric to your seasonings blend.