A recent conversation, or perhaps a friendly debate would be a more appropriate term, with a friend of mine involved the “correct” way to prepare the popular dish known as Chili, inspired this post. Delving deeper into the topic, I found out some interesting facts about a dish that has made its way to the top of the list of American comfort foods.
Notations dating back to the 1850’s mention bricks made of suet, dried beef, and chili peppers that were boiled in water on the trail as a staple in the southwest.
The 1892 Worlds Fair in Chicago included the San Antonio Chili Stand which served to further popularize the dish and in the 1970s Chili was made the official dish of Texas.
With all that history, the original recipe had to have gone through many many mutations depending upon the cook preparing it. These days Chili cook-offs are widely popular as people from all walks of life compete to prove that they have indeed come up with the perfect combination of ingredients to create an award-winning recipe.
Is there just one flawless way to prepare Chili? I think not, but just in case I am wrong, here is my “Perfect” Chili Recipe.
2lbs ground meat (I use venison)
1 large onion minced
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
2 Tablespoons taco seasoning
1 large jar of salsa
1 can 14 Oz stewed tomatoes
1 large can tomato sauce
2 cans chili beans in sauce
1 Tablespoon smoked pepper sauce (I use Hickey Bottom brand)
Chili powder to taste
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup ketchup
Brown ground meat with onions and garlic. Add taco seasoning and 1/4 cup water. Simmer until water evaporates and meat is well coated in seasoning.
Combine all ingredients in a large pot and simmer on med/low for one hour.
Serve topped with Fritos, sliced scallions, sour cream, shredded cheddar, or your choice of toppings. Enjoy!!