Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Eggplant Chili Recipe

Ok- because a few folks have asked me is a starter chili recipe :)

This recipe is for eggplant chili and can easily be made as completely meat free using soy crumbles (which is what I usually do) instead of ground meats.

Since chili is subjective, remember to taste often and adjust seasonings as needed.

Eggplant chili

3 medium eggplant, peeled and cubed

1 each chopped red and yellow peppers

1 14 oz can FF chicken or vegetable broth

2 8 oz cans of tomato sauce

1 can white beans drained and rinsed

1 lb ground turkey (or soy crumbles)

1 chopped onion

1 clove garlic diced

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1 TBS Chipotle chili powder

2 TBS Red chili powder

1/4 tsp cumin( I list spices I usually use but spice to taste)

2 tsp olive oil

powdered onion and garlic to taste.

Saute peppers, onion, garlic and a tsp of chili powder in olive oil for about 5 minutes or until veggies are tender.

Add meat and cook until meat is brown.

Transfer meat mixture into a medium pot and add remaining ingredients.

Add remaining spices.

If you like a little bit of a Kick add some ancho chili powder.

If you like more of a kick, add more ancho chili powder.

Cook on low for about 2 hours, stirring occassionally.

Powdered spices tend to cook out easily so feel free to add more spices to taste and some extra liquid if needed.

Cook for about another 30 minutes until the eggplant and beans are soft.

If your chili is a little too soupy throw in a little cous cous ( a little goes a long way!)

Remove from heat an let sit for about 10 minutes so the flavors can soak in.


Saturday, April 24, 2010

How it began....

Several years ago, a drunk and obnoxious person told me I could never make good chili because I come from NY. Those who know me know never to tell me I can't do something. And so started my quest for the perfect chili recipe.

Ok the first few attempts may have been a tad bit hot. One guinea pig....umm neighbor referred to my attempts as "NASA Chili". He said it burned on re-entry to the atmosphere. Take from that what you will. And I swear I didn't know Josh had a heart problem or I never would have let him have some...

After much futzing, I came up with a recipe that is pure perfection. Those of you who have had my chili know this to be true. :) Armed with this recipe and high hopes, I entered in the Texas Ladies State Chili Championship for the first time.

Oh it was exciting too! All the people and festivities and the pots of chili cooking! I happily jumped into it fully confident I was going to place. Folks who have had my chili can tell you its damn fine chili.

So after a long day of cooking and merriment and after losing all feeling in my tongue (someone had to taste test), I settled in for the results. Boomer called the final table (20-11) then called 10th through second place...still not me..hmmm could I have won?? Then he called the numbers for first place...I don't remember all the numbers but he was calling mine! He announces the last number "fffffffffffffour!" Damn I was "ffffffffffive!". I didn't win. But that was ok. I must have made semis....a quick peek at the table listing showed I didn't even make it to quarters.

But but but my chili is gooooooood....turns out good doesn't matter....because its also orange not dark red....hmmmm

So began my adventures in CASI chili competitions. I can count on one hand the number of times I have competed in the three years since my first competition but that is changing now. I have researched and tested and researched some more. I have learned CASI chili is a beast all of its own but I will tame it... or not...or will...

So come on my adventure with me... sometimes this blog will be serious, sometimes funny but always an honest account...Pull up a spoon shaped paddle and let's go down this river together!