Monday, November 18, 2019

Chili Recipes All Fall

As with any season, our family likes to find a "thing" to do. We've done Tour of Parks, Fall Hikes, Tour of Wading Pools, Tour of Restaurants (where we tried a new restaurant every week), etc. The oldest mini's suggestion for fall was Chili Sunday's. It's just as it sounds: each Sunday we make a new-to-us chili and watch football. We've mostly stuck to this, even when we went to New Mexico for fall break.

The minis were in charge of finding the recipes and they even helped make them--except for the last few, which by then they wanted me to make them. Our favorites included the vegan chili (this one we actually make quite often during the winter months, so it wasn't exactly new) and the pizza chili had great flavor thanks to the Italian sausage. The oldest really loved the Cincinnati chili and guests have loved the white chicken chili when we make it (it feeds a good crowd of people easily).

1.) Cincinnati Chili Recipe

2.) White chicken chili

3.) Pizza chili

** I did not use ground beef in this. Instead I upped the Italian sausage (because we love Graziano's sausage), which gave it tons of flavor and spice.

4.) BBQ chili

** This was surprisingly sweet, which we weren't expecting.

5.) 3 Bean Vegetarian Chili
** This is the recipe I based my vegetarian chili on, but in the end, it was me just dumping our favorite beans into the mix. I make a version of this quite often and it's a favorite among my kids and daycare kiddos.

6.) Dr. Pepper Chili

7.) Louisiana Chili

8.) Chili and cinnamon rolls
** This is apparently a Midwestern thing (particularly Iowa and Nebraska). I don't understand it, but we did give it a try. However, I just couldn't do it. I ate my chili first and then my cinnamon roll for dessert. 

9.) Deanna chili

** This was the name my children gave my friend's chili (clue: her name is Deanna) when she took over chili making the Sunday we were in New Mexico. It is/was fantastic! Here's the recipe:

CHILI:  I made it in a crock pot but you can also make just in a big pot on the stove.
1.  Brown a pound of ground beef (I used beef but you can also use pork/chicken depending on your taste).  Drain the meat and set it to the side.
2. Chop celery, onions, and garlic.  Cut them in small pieces and soften them in the pan the meat was in.  1-2 onions, 3-4 celery stalks, and about 6 cloves of garlic. 
3.  Put the beef and veggies in a big stew pot or crockpot. 
4.  Add about 3 cans of whole stewed tomatoes and 1-2 cans of diced tomatoes (depends on which kind you like more). (You can also add a container of diced green chilies too- but I didn't do that).
5. Then add a can or two of kidney beans (I don't like them too much so I only did one can).
6.  Add a cup or two of chicken broth (2 cups if you like it soupy, I did one cup because I like it thick). 
7.  2 tablespoons full of Cumin (that is the main spice in chili).  (I then liberally sprinkle to taste).
8.  1 tablespoon of each black and white pepper, 1 tablespoon salt, 1 teaspoon of each oregano and paprika, and a small piece of dark chocolate.
9.  Let everything simmer for at least an hour.  You can cook it all day in a crockpot if you have one (that's what I did).  Chili seems to get better the longer it sits, since all the flavors can blend together.    This is the type of recipe that everyone tweaks a little bit to his/her taste. 
And then serve :-)  I like mine with cheese on top but other people also do sour cream and chives as well.
*** Don't forget the dark chocolate! I'm mostly saying that because of a humorous story about us forgetting the dark chocolate at the store, so Deanna had to run to the gas station down the street from our Airbnb. Except it wasn't a gas station, it was a car wash. We had no idea (and had both mistaken it for a gas station) until that little moment.

10.) Wendy's chili

** No recipe. My planning skills lacked one week so we grabbed some in the drive thru after hiking one Sunday morning. Chili Sunday was saved!

I feel like we've made a lot of chili's the past few weeks. Chili is a meal staple for us through the winter, but after Thanksgiving we'll be switching it up to Soup Sunday's as the minis have discovered many soup recipes they'd like to try!