12.12.10: dinner (chili served in a china bowl makes it fancy)

Michael's Knock-You-On-Your-Ass-Chili

This weekend was a slightly melancholy one, I don’t know why. General crankiness, weird weather, who the hell knows. Regardless, Sunday night we needed some therapy, and at the suggestion of the lovely Mrs., I made some flipping chili. And that was that.

I made lots of chili in grad school, I even won the Chemistry Department chili contest my last year (second the year before, c’mon!). I took it a step beyond with this batch. Luckily, our kitchen was stocked with dried chiles, which I was able to toast and grind into my own chili powder along with some lovely cumin seeds. I browned a pound of each ground pork, sirloin and lamb, then added two huge sweet onions followed by crushed tomatoes, a beer, the chili powder/cumin/cayenne and some water. A few additional spices here and there and a loooooong cook down on the stove and then there was chili. I added two cans of black beans (the store downstairs was out of reds) with 30 minutes to go and the rest is history. We finished the bowls with some sharp New York cheddar and, and I must stress this, fresh green onions. The fresh onions really added much, I cannot overstress this.

We are enjoying this for lunch all week and it really is a great pick-you-up on these long cold winter days. The spice, the warmth, the sustenance, it’s all perfect. So to your ranges and warm your homes and your life with some luscious chili or other stewishness. Until next time, friends- stay warm and cook on!

  1. Good article with more knowledge.

    Thank you.

  2. Jamie said:

    “Chemistry Department chili contest”

    There is no un-awesome part of this sentence. You’re right about chili being served in china makes it fancy, sort of like how my sloppy joes served on challah makes *them* fancy. Also, in both cases, perfect winter foods.

    • michael said:

      Said chili contest was pretty epic. Defeating the department glassblower, a good friend and teacher, was certainly bittersweet. Thanks for reading!

  3. Jamie said:

    The pleasure is entirely mine! And can there be an un-epic chili contest? I just don’t know…

  4. Kim said:

    I have a chil recipe that is REALLY overly complicated, so the succint narrative on your version reminds me I need to amend mine. Because chili isn’t supposed to be complicated, right?! Perfect winter food.

    We recently picked up a habanero from our friend’s garden. Might throw that into a pot of our “Ring of Fire” chili before it goes bad.


    P.S. We gussy ours up with some fancy china, too. And fresh garden chives.

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