This was the chili we ate Monday night. It was the first batch that I’ve ever made from stratch (i.e. without a packet of seasonings). My husband has always made the chili, from his Grandmother Mimi’s recipe, which she made a point of teaching her grandsons before she passed away. I used Mimi’s recipe as a jumping off point, but after that my family took over. My dad had brought us some beautiful ground beef on Sunday and I couldn’t thaw a couple of pounds fast enough. And if you’ve never seen beautiful ground beef then it’s time you stopped buying your beef in the grocery. I browned this up in a big cast iron pot and added Mexene chili powder as it cooked. It was so lean there wasn’t any fat to drain away – I’ve never had that happen before. I added cinnamon, a finely chopped onion, a hot pepper chopped so fine it wasn’t recognizable (otherwise my husband wouldn’t have eaten it), minced garlic, red pepper flakes, and three quarts of my Aunt Beverly‘s tomato sauce. It just about killed me to use three whole quarts, because that stuff’s like gold, but I had set out to make the best chili ever, and I knew that was the way to do it. I used 4 cups of kidney beans that I had soaked, cooked, and frozen as per my ebook. I’d forgotten to thaw them, so I just ran hot water over the ziplocks until they released the frozen hunks of beans into the pot. They thawed and mingled at it simmered, which went on all afternoon. The Mimi recipe called for buffalo wing sauce, and I only had a little in the bottom of the bottle, so in went some more Mexene. This chili, I must admit, was pretty fabulous. I’m not going to link a printable recipe, because I have no idea of the exact amounts of Mexene, garlic, or cinnamon I used, it was just “to taste”. We ate it over pasta and I topped mine with shredded cheddar and oyster crackers, but when I had a second bowl later I just ate chili alone – it was too good to dilute with the regular accompaniments. I’d made a huge pot, and my eldest son is away at college, so we had leftovers. That’s where Pinterest comes in.
This recipe is from one of my favorite food blog, HowSweetEats.com. It’s simple comfort food, and was perfect for using up some of the leftover chili and the pasta, which I always cook too much of. I used Jiffy corn muffin mix, because it’s the best and that’s what you should always use, too. Unless, of course, you can make great cornbread from scratch like my mother. I did not inherit that ability, so it’s Jiffy for me.
This is Ree’s frito pie recipe. I feel I can call her Ree, since between reading her blog, following her on twitter, and watching her show on the Food Network I really feel I know her. And Charlie. I love Charlie. I do mine a bit different, though. I don’t do bags of fritos, I do Tostitos scoops on a plate. And I may or may not have eaten this for breakfast this morning. I had no choice, really, since I’d already eaten the entire apple cake Edie brought on Sunday. The guys never even knew there was an apple cake in the house. And I’m not a bit sorry. It was damn good, and I deserved every bite.
I’m linking this up to Oh, How Pinteresting, The 52 Weeks of Pinterest Challenge, and Works for Me Wednesday. And then even though I don’t have an exact recipe, I’m going to link up to the Recipe Swap over at The Grocery Cart Challenge and Foodie Wednesday, because this really was too tasty not to share.
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