All-American Chili – As soon as the thermometer dipped just below 70° I quickly whipped out my Dutch oven and made a batch of chili. The cooler weather may have only lasted for 3 days but hey, you have to take advantage when opportunity presents itself! I am definitely ready for fall food and chili always tops the list as a favorite in our house.
I’ve been making this version of chili for years and could have sworn that I blogged it but couldn’t find the post anywhere. To me, it’s a very quintessential American chili. You start by sauteing vegetables and then add in tomatoes, beans, and spices and let it simmer for awhile. It always turns out delicious and fulfills that classic chili craving that I seem to have. I’m sure this could be made in the slow cooker and adapted a thousand different ways.
It also goes great with this Parmesan Herb Garlic Bread.
- 1 medium onion, minced
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 1 large carrot, peeled and finely grated or finely chopped
- Freshly ground black pepper and Kosher salt, to taste
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 8 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
- 1 jalapeño pepper, minced
- 2 tbsp. chili powder
- 2 tbsp. brown sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 3 tbsp. tomato paste
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 1/4 cups Merlot or other fruity red wine
- 2 (28 oz.) cans whole tomatoes, undrained and coarsely chopped
- 2 (15 oz.) cans light red kidney beans, drained & rinsed
- Your favorite chili toppings, such as: sharp cheddar, minced red onion, green onions, etc.
1. Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion through carrot to pan and cook for about 5 minutes, until vegetable begin to soften. Add in ground beef and allow to brown, stirring to crumble. Cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Drain excess liquid. Add in garlic and jalapeño and season with salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
2. In a small bowl, combine chili powder and the next 5 ingredients (chili powder through bay leaves), and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add in wine, tomatoes, and kidney beans. Season with salt and pepper to taste and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
3. Uncover and cook for 30-45 minutes more, stirring occasionally. Discard the bay leaves. Enjoy!
adapted from Cooking Light, January 2003.