Sunday, September 25, 2011

Beef & Pork Chili

Is there anything better on a cold fall day than a nice spicy bowl of chili? We don't think so.

A couple of years ago, Michelle went on a hunt for the perfect chili recipe. Both of us LOVE chili, and we wanted a recipe that would make the 2+ hours of prep and cooking worth the wait. We found one with this recipe, which we only slightly changed.

Here's what you need:
6 slices of bacon
4 cloves of garlic
1 red bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
2 medium onions
1 1/4 lb. ground pork
1 1/4 lb. ground beef (we used 80% lean)
3 Tbsp. Chili powder
1 Tbsp. ground cumin
1 Tbsp. chipotle chili powder
2 Tbsp dried oregano
1/2 Tbsp. smoked paprika
1/2 Tbsp. paprika
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 15 oz. can of black beans
1 15 oz. can of kidney beans
1 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
1 28 oz. can of diced tomatoes in juice
1 cup beer

We know, that seems like a lot of ingredients. The flavor of this chili is killer though, so just trust us.

Here's what you do:
Start off by slicing and dicing your peppers, onions and garlic. On the red and yellow pepper, we remove the membrane from the inside of the peppers, like this:

The membrane can have a bitter flavor sometimes, so we remove it just in case.

Set your diced veggies aside for later.

Next, mix up your spice blend and set that aside as well.

Start a large dutch oven heating over medium heat. Cut your bacon into 1/2" strips and toss in the pot.

You want your bacon to crisp lightly. It will continue to cook while you add all of the other ingredients.

Toss in the vegetables.

Add the spices.

Toss that around and let it cook for a few minutes. You want to go from here:

To here:

Now it's time to add the meat. Start with the ground beef and break it up with a wooden spoon.

Once you have that broken up and it's starting to brown, do the same procedure with the ground pork.

Let those brown completely. This could take a while, so just keep an eye on it and stir it around occasionally.

While your meat is browning, drain and rinse your beans and measure out your beer.

This is how the cooked meat should look after it has browned:

Pour in the beer.

Add the beans.

Stir that around to combine the ingredients.

Next, add in both cans of tomatoes and give it a good stir.

At this point, your chili should look like this:

Drop your heat to a low simmer and walk away. We set a time for about 30 minutes to pop in and give it a good stir. Let this cook away for at least an hour and a half.

Here is our finished product. You can see how the meat has really soaked up a lot of the tomato juice and it's thickened up a bit.

This can be served right away, or you can do like we do, and put it into the fridge overnight and heat it up in the crock pot the next day. This is a perfect meal for watching football.

We garnished ours with a squeeze of lime, shredded cheddar cheese, a dollop of light sour cream, and chives. Of course, Zack adds oyster crackers too.


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