Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Wow, it’s October and the frost is on the pumpkin…..well, we’re in Florida and I guess we don’t get frost, at least not this early.  But October is known for many things.  Some are fun: some are funny: some are important.  October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Please have your mammogram.  I had mine on my birthday month.  It’s important.  On a happier note, October is Spinach Lovers Month and National Book Month.  Since my novel comes out this month, it’s a great month for me.  Yes, I’ve written a novel, The Bonnie Neuk Tea Room.com .  It’s also National Country Music Month.  And best of all is National Chili Month.  Do you know how good a pot of chili can taste? Let’s give it a try.  You can temper it to your taste.  Hot and spicy or mild.
Chili with a Little Heat

1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ground turkey or ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can diced tomatoes
2 celery stakes, chopped
1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained (either the light or
       the dark beans)
1 small can chick peas rinsed and drained (optional)
1 can  (29 oz) tomato puree *
1 jalapeno pepper, de-veined, seeds removed, chopped if
        you like
2 Tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon thyme, oregano and rosemary, crusted
1 Tablespoon cumin
1 beef cube dissolved in ½ cup water
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional) 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 Tablespoon basil
Salt and pepper to taste
Shredded cheddar cheese for topping (optional)
1 Tablespoon onion, chopped for each bowl garnish (optional)

In a soup pot, cook ground turkey or ground beef, onions, green peppers  celery, and garlic, medium heat with a little olive oil.
Drain any excess fat.
Add beans, diced tomatoes, tomato puree, chili powder,
    cumin, beef cubes, Worcestershire sauce and all species.
Bring to a boil, and reduce to a simmer.
Cook for 30-45 minutes or until you reach the desired thickness.
Serve in bowls with shredded cheddar cheese on top
Serves 4-6   Next day it’s even better.

* If you prefer very chunky chili, use another can of diced tomatoes in place of the tomato puree.
Variations: Use any one or more.

  • Add 2 Tablespoons brown sugar, 1 Tablespoon instant coffee, and 1 Tablespoon baking cocoa
  • Add 1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • Add 1 can (15oz) garbanzo beans drained
  • Add 1 can pork and beans
  • Add 1 Tablespoon cumin
  • Add 1 can (15 oz) corn, drained
  • Add 1 cup chunky salsa either red or verde (green)
  • Add 1 can sliced olives, drained
  • Add 1 can Great Northern beans
  • Add ½ pound sausage, fried, cut in 1 inch piece and drained

Chili is something that you need to fit to your taste. Anything goes.  I have added a few green beans, some turkey sausage or any vegetable.  Experimenting is the name of the game.