Thursday, June 21, 2007

Firecracker Chili

Who says daddies can't cook? Thanks to prodding from my fellow dads, here's my recipe for no bean chili just in time for the 4th of July. (It even took first place in two chili contests. OK, they were small contests but hey it's still good chili!) Best of all, my kids seem to like it a lot whether it's with rice, baked potato, on hot dogs/burgers or just served with cheese on top. I serve it at my kid's birthday parties.

It's really easy to make. Just make sure you have a skillet, a big pot and buy one of those huge 20 oz bottles of chili powder. The ingredient list below is for every 1 lb of meat so you can easily scale it up as much as you need (i.e. for 2 lbs of meat, double everything else, etc.):

The Meat
1 lb regular hamburger (fattier meat will taste better than lean)
1/2 onion diced (optional)
oil for cooking

The Rub (for every lb of meat use:)
1 1/2 tbs corn starch
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp garlic powder

Other (for every lb of meat use:)
14 oz. can of diced or whole tomatoes
1/4 cup water (depends on how thick you like the sauce)
1/8 cup Ketchup
2 oz. chili powder

To Taste
cayenne pepper
more garlic powder
more ketchup

Here's the secret to this recipe, you prepare the meat as you would in many Asian dishes. First thing to do is mix up the rub ingredients in a small bowl. Now get out a big bowl to mix the rub into your meat and onions (optional on the onions). Don't mash the meat too hard or it will get tough. You just need the corn starch to be incorporated into the meat. Let it sit now.

Now put the Other ingredients except the chili powder all in a big pot and bring to boil. As soon as it boils reduce heat immediately and leave it on very low heat to simmer.

Break out the skillet, put in some oil and stir fry the meat/rub mixture on high heat. Unlike other chili recipes, you don't want to brown the meat, cook it through and toss it into the big pot. Now toss in the chili powder. Make sure the chili looks nice and dark, add in more chili powder as needed (chili powder really isn't spicy so no worries about putting in too much.)

Since the meat is already cooked, the chili is done as soon as the flavors meld. I usually taste it after 15 minutes and add in more chili or garlic powder or salt. Some people like it sweeter so you can add in more ketchup. If you like the tomatoes to be softer and sweeter you can cook it for longer, just add water if you are in danger of burning and stir often.

Serve it any way you wish and add cayenne pepper to taste. This spice is really neat in that the spiciness doesn't linger on your tongue for hours on end. But it does fade away with long cooking so there isn't any reason to add it to the dish until it is served.

Chili is pretty versatile so add in any condiments you see fit like salsa, cheese, torilla chips, etc.

Enjoy! Next time I have to write down my pesto clam sauce recipe!


daddy in a strange land said...

Cool! But no pictures? :(


BTW dude, chili over rice (with or without hotdogs cut-up in it)--that's an AsAm thing, right? :)

Darryl said...

That's awesome

You're the man!!

Listen, I am inspired to re-enter

the kitchen and make something

happen again...chicken adobo,

red beans and rice, or cous cous

with lamb based chick -pea stew...

Thanks for the recipes

Cue up that Pesto Clam Sauce Pasta

and let the Imagination rule!

The good tool for firecracker

chili is the crock pot.