Let’s face it, as cliche as this realization is, there is truth behind it: Mondays are rarely easy. I sleep in on the weekends. I stay up late reading books (as I did last night). Both enjoyments leave me ill prepared for Mondays. Granted, there’s a rare Monday that crops up now and again where the Monday outlook is a complete 180.
In anticipation of the usual Monday, I put together an attempt at chili on Sunday night. Over night in the crock pot (which made the house smell fabulous), and a minimal fuss dinner Monday evening. Disclaimer: I was also hoping my making of chili would influence the weather. It was not, in the least, chili weather today.
Before I get into the recipe, let’s talk a brief history of my personal encounters with chili. The first solo chili cooking experience turned out more like a tasty multi bean soup that Casey and I mixed with sour cream, scooped up with Fritos and a spoon and called dinner on a chilly Flagstaff winter night. The second time I made chili, it was a little thicker, but didn’t taste like how I recall chili – whether at my mom’s house or from a bread bowl on the ski slopes – tasting.
Katie’s Third Attempt at Chili
1 cup dried black beans
1 cup dried kidney beans
1 can corn (low/no sodium or frozen corn works great too!)
1 can diced tomatoes
1 or 2 lovely Hatch green chilies (or, pepper of your choice)
1 green bell pepper
1 medium red or yellow onion
3 garlic cloves
2 cups chicken broth, 2 cups water
Random handful or two of pearl barely
Chile Powder, Ground Cumin, dash Garam Masala, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper
The general idea is simple. Soak the beans in water for 6 hours. Strain and rinse the beans. Chop up – roughly or finely, chef’s choice – the veggies and garlic. Toss them in the crock pot with the kidney and black beans, add Chile Powder and other spices to taste. If you’d like it hotter, add more red pepper flakes. Don’t forget to account for the potential hottness of the chile peppers you used. Add the water and broth.
I threw in the barely as an after thought. Thought it did give some grain to the dish and I think balanced out the protein from the beans.
The chili sat overnight on low. Corn and tomatoes were added in the morning and they cooked together for about thirty minutes before the chili was put away to be reheated in the evening. I’ve come a long way since first making chili/bean soup almost three years ago. It was tasty, especially with warm cornbread. And Meatless Monday was met with another success. Albeit, I deem success as Casey, Katie, and Parker are all feed within reasonable time period, in a reasonably healthy way, while using ingredients either on hand or in the pantry. That’s the week night mantra.
Check back later in the week for my variation on Noca‘s Tagliatelle with Pancetta and Farm-Eqq Yolk.