Only I would talk Chili going into spring, but I have a reason! Today would have been my mom’s 62nd birthday and so this post is in honor of her. Happy birthday, mom!
I’m calling it chili stew because I know I could start WWIII with the ingredients in my “Chili”. Growing up, my mom would make HUGE A$$ batches of soups, stews, chili, cabbage rolls, goulash etc and we’d eat each for a week or more. There was just the three of us but she easily cooked for 20.
Whether it was out of necessity to stretch a dish for just one more meal, or she just liked the taste, my mom made chili with beans and celery. I always liked it. Now just hold on a sec. If you are from the “Chili doesn’t have BEANS and it certainly doesn’t have CELERY!” school, just chill. This is Chili Stew 😉 So there- it’s a totally different thing. But seriously, in my house, this is Chili.
Since my mom added her twists, I took it a step further by adding more veggies!
What “strange” things does your family do to seemingly classic recipes? I’d love to hear in the comments below!
56 oz crushed tomatoes (that’s two large cans or use your own)
2 LBS of your favorite fresh ground beef. (I use 80/20 but strain a good amount of the fat)
1.5 cups soaked or canned kidney beans <–(rinse these)
1 Medium to large Spanish Onion, chopped
2 Cloves of garlic, diced
2 Stalks Celery, medium sliced
4 medium to large white button mushrooms, thin sliced (feel free to omit if you’re not a fan)
1/2 Red Bell Pepper, diced
1.5 TBS Chili Powder
1 TBS Cumin
1 TBS Paprika
TASTE YOUR BATCH AT THE END AND THEN ADD TO TASTE:
1 TBS Tabasco brand smoked chipotle hot sauce <— This is a new addition to my chili – I just love it.
Salt and Pepper to taste
1. Add your fresh ground beef to a large stock pot and cook over medium heat until no pink remains and it just starts to brown. I take care not to break it up too much. I like my chili very hearty. Add salt and pepper (about 1 tsp of each). Drain fat if necessary- A few tablespoons is ok but the whole bottom of the pan shouldn’t be soaked.
2. Add your garlic, celery, onion, mushrooms and red pepper. Give it a stir and let cook about 2 more minutes
3. Add all your dry seasonings (Chili powder, Cumin, Paprika) and stir.
4. Add your crushed tomatoes and kidney beans and cook, covered for at least a half hour on medium low, siring occasionally.
5. Carefully taste your chili stew and adjust the seasoning. I highly recommend the tabasco and you may need just a tad more salt. Cook, covered 20-30 minutes more and let your flavors more fully develop. This stuff is even better the next day!