December 14, 2008

Flibbert's Super-Robusto Veggie and Meat Chunky Chili Extravaganza: A Recipe in Three Pots

This is a delightful cold-weather appropriate recipe that is sure to become a favorite of caveman households across the nation. 

I started out wanting to make a vegetarian chili in my slow cooker like the one Fresh Direct sells. 

I bought John David a slow cooker for Christmas along with a cookbook and I saw a recipe that looked promising.  But then I got into a discussion about intellectual property rights with John David and, not wanting to violate those, decided that I wanted to merge it with another recipe in the book that contained meat. 

So, I made my own recipe and what follows are the step-by-step instructions so that you can enjoy the same with your family.

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium butternut squash peeled and cubed
  • 2 diced carrots
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes w/ juices (28 oz)
  • 2 cans (19 oz) of black beans drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (4.5 oz) of chopped chilis
  • 1 zucchini sliced
  • 2 lbs stewing beef
  • 1 cup of chicken stock
  • 3 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro
Directions
  1. Immediately decide to double the above amounts without any regard to the capacity of your slow cooker because you didn't eat breakfast or lunch on the day you went grocery shopping.
  2. Get to the grocery store and substitute three regular yellow squash for the butternut squash because you can't find the butternut squash and you're not sure how big a medium one is.  Besides, squash are delicious and pretty.
  3. Buy three zucchini instead of two because you love zucchini.
  4. Choose to buy beef stock instead of chicken stock because it just seems to make more sense with the addition of beef to the veggie chili recipe.
  5. Buy a bag of baby carrots because the adult carrots look weird and the baby ones promise to be a good snack while you're cooking.
  6. Wander around the store for 45 minutes looking for canned chili peppers.  Instead of asking for help, buy a jar of chopped jalapenos because, after all, you're a manly man and the Spanish word for peppers is "chili," so it's really kind of the same thing.
  7. Brown the meat in a large skillet.
  8. Combine all the other ingredients, but don't measure too carefully.  It's chili.  So, maybe put a bit more jalapenos and a bit more chili powder.  Oh!  And just dump all of the beef stock in because why waste?
  9. Just chop up all of the baby carrots that you haven't eaten because no one really knows how many baby carrots it takes to make a grown-up carrot and why would you even consider such a thing when the babies are so cute and delicious?
  10. Add some more jalapenos because the chili seems like it might be a little bland and you also think maybe you didn't add a full 9 ounces to the mix because the jar you bought is 12 ounces and you were just eyeballing it anyway.
  11. Use sea salt instead of regular salt because you bought some last week and unless you have a real fear of night blindness, you don't want it to go to waste.
  12. As you're chopping and dumping things into your slow cooker, you will come to realize that you obviously have some kind of problem in your brain that makes you completely unable to gauge the volume of all of these ingredients.
  13. Dump everything into a stock pot that your roommate left out.
  14. Realize that the stock pot is not big enough, either.
  15. Dump everything into a larger stock pot and put it on the stove.
  16. Put over a low heat and cook for 4ish hours stirring now and then mostly out of curiosity.
  17. As you stir it, feel free to dump in some other stuff that you think will make it taste good.
Enjoy!

Update: Whilst stirring, note how much like the Fresh Direct chili it smells and then get very excited about the big chunks of beef you see in there.  Perhaps you might let loose a manly roar, "IT'S GONNA BE SO GOOD!! NOM! NOM! NOM!"  And feel free to thump your chest in triumph over your culinary greatness.

Update 2: I'm enjoying a bowl of my chili now.  It actually cooked in about 2.5 hours, which makes me think I should have lowered the heat a little and let it go a little longer, although the meat is still very tender and delicious.  If I had to do it again, I would likely use less beef stock and maybe some more tomatoes -- because I love tomatoes and because it's pretty watery.  The extra water makes it much more like a stew than chili, really, but the flavor profile has the kick of chili.

But the bottom line is that this is spicy without overwhelming and it is deeelicious!  You need a fork and a spoon to eat this!

Update 3: Oh!  And I think the substitution of black beans in place of traditional kidney beans really didn't make much of a difference to me.  If I had to do it over, I'd examine the nutritional benefits of the two beans and make a decision based on that.

Update 4: If you follow the steps I followed above, please note that this makes a TON of stew/chili.  I have enough here to eat a couple of bowls every day for the rest of the week.

Posted by: Flibbertigibbet at 05:09 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
Category: Food and Drink
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