It may only be Fall, but parts of last week certainly felt like Winter. We quickly hopped from temperatures near 80 down to highs in the 50s. Needless to say, we’ve been a little confused about what to wear in the mornings. Despite the drop in temperatures, we’ve yet to switch on our heat. That’s what chili is for.
It’s no secret that I see food as so much more than sustenance. Food is something that your entire being is tied to. One of my earliest memories is of the apartment my mom lived in in Mississippi and eating scrambled eggs with yellow mustard. And for the record, I will still eat yellow mustard on scrambled eggs. It’s quite tasty. Food provides comfort, not just from a rumbling stomach, but comfort for life. Having a bad day? Grab some chocolate. Feeling particularly stressed? Where’s that wine… Getting together with family? Let’s plan a delicious dinner.
Food lives in our hearts, it comforts us through good and bad.
When someone’s family suffers through a hard time, we plan meals. It’s what we can do to share the love, share their burden, give them some comfort.
This week, #SundaySupper is all about Comfort Food…things that make you feel warm inside through good and bad. This chili will make you warm inside both literally and metaphorically. My favorite part – You can start it in the morning, let it cook all day, and it’s ready for you when you need it most.
Chunky Chili Beans
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Large Sweet Onions, Chopped
4 Cloves Garlic, Chopped
1 Can (4 oz) Diced Green Chilies (Mild or Hot, your choice)
2 Tbsp Cajun Seasoning
1 Tsp Cayenne Pepper
1/2 Cup Chili Powder
1 Tsp Salt
2 Lbs Ground Hamburger (93% Lean)
1 Cup Prepared Salsa (Mild)
4 Cans (14 oz each) Diced Tomatoes
2 Cups Water
2 Cans (14-15 oz each) Dark Red Kidney Beans, Drained and Rinsed
1/2 Cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
Shredded Cheddar Cheese (Optional)
Sour Cream (Optional)
In a large non-stick pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook just until the onion starts to become clear. Add the garlic, chilies and spices. Stir well to combine. Add the hamburger meat, breaking it up and mixing the onion mixture throughout. Cook, stirring and breaking up occasionally, until the hamburger meat is cooked through. Add the salsa, tomatoes and water. Mix well. Reduce heat to low and simmer covered for at least an hour, but as much as all day, stirring occasionally and adding water as necessary.
About an hour before you are ready to eat, add the drained and rinsed kidney beans to the pot. Stir well to combine and allow to simmer for 45-60 minutes. Stir in the chocolate chips about 10 minutes before serving.
Serve steaming hot. Top with sour cream and cheese if desired. Perfect with crackers or tortilla chips.