Recipes / party food
This amazing chili recipe was ‘inspired by’ Alex Guarnaschelli’s cookbook, Cook With Me (a wonderful Christmas present this year). Of course, me being me, I’ve changed it up a bit. My wife doesn’t like bell peppers or chunky tomatoes and I like more than 1 kind of meat. So that all got switched up. And, Of Course I had to add some Flaming Fruit Sauce and Cayenne. It just needed it! This recipe makes at least a dozen servings, so feel free to cut it in half if you like. I sent some to neighbors and friends and froze some. Once upon a non-Covid time it would have been a big dinner party. But, I love having yumminess in the freezer!!
2 lbs ground chuck (80% lean)
1 lb pork shoulder, cut into ½” pieces
1 lb beef stew meat (we used sirloin tips) cut into ½” pieces
2 large sweet onions (1 ½ chopped, for chili, ½ minced, for topping)
2 pablano peppers, chopped (seeded)
3 jalapenos, chopped (I seeded, feel free to leave them if you like)
5 Tbs vegetable oil
16 cloves garlic, minced
6 Tbs tomato paste
4 Bay leaves
5 Tbs chili powder
2 tsp cayenne pepper powder
1 tsp ground coriander
¼ Cup Jessi’s Flaming Fruit Sauce – Ghost Pepper Extra Hot
2 tsp ground cumin
4 Tbs apple cider vinegar
2 24 oz containers of strained tomatoes
5 15oz cans of black beans, drained (I used a #10 tin)
Sea salt and white pepper, to season
Shredded sharp cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
Lime to squeeze
Minced onion (from above)
Sliced fresh or pickled jalapenos
Meat: I do this as a one pot meal, so I do all my prep in a large, heavy bottom soup pot. You can do all the browning in a large saute pan if you like. In order to avoid boiling/steaming the meat, you’ll have to do it in 1lb batches over medium high heat. Brown the ground beef and move to a sheet pan to cool, then add 1 Tbs of oil and add the pork to brown and remove. Repeat with the steak. Season each layer with sea salt and white pepper. At this point, you’ll start to notice brown bits sticking to the bottom of the pot. This is GOOD. This is FLAVOR.
Vegetables: To the same pan, add 3 Tbs vegetable oil, onions, peppers, garlic, sea salt and white pepper (to season). Saute 5 to 8 minutes, stirring constantly, until onions start to brown. Then add tomato paste, cayenne, coriander, cumin, chili flakes, chili powder, and cook another 2 to 3 minutes.
Chili: This is where I really differ from the amazing Alex Guarnaschelli – she uses a slow cooker, feel free to do that. I make it as a one pot meal. Add the bay leaf, tomatoes, vinegar and 4 cups of water and stir to deglaze the fond (brown bits) on the bottom of the pot. Add meat back to pot. Cover and set to a low heat. Cook for 4 hours, stirring occasionally. Add drained black beans and cook another 2 hours, uncovered.
Serve up however you like, over rice, potatoes, as chili mac, etc. Yesterday I had someone tell me in the Midwest they eat it with peanut butter sandwiches. Don’t ask me. I love it with lime, onion, avocado, cheese, jalapenos, and tortilla chips.
Let me know if you like it!!!
This recipe can easily be made vegetarian or vegan by switching the type of meatballs!!
2 lbs of cooked meatballs (your favorite meat or meat-less variety, or homemade)
1 Cup of Peach-Apricot Sauce (you could easily use the Mango-Pineapple or Blueberry-Ginger for this recipe as well)
1 Cup of Orange Marmalade
1/2 Cup of Dried Cranberries
1/4 to 1/2 Cup of Water
In our house, we use a fresh turkey meatball, but whatever variety or recipe you prefer works fine. Put all ingredients into a small crockpot except the water. Check in an hour to see if the water is needed to compensate for the moisture used by the cranberries, add if needed.
Serve with toothpicks as a pass-around appetizer, or over rice with some glazed carrots on the side (see our recipe)! This was a HUGE hit for our New Year's Eve Party!