Oh gosh, it’s that time of year again, isn’t it?
The time of year when my Facebook feed fills with the catty banter of, “my team is better than yours therefore you suck”,
when every server in every restaurant on Sunday dons their favorite teams’ jersey,
& when you can find me planted firmly on my couch any given Sunday…& Thursday…& Monday
(wow, that sounds like I have a problem).
It’s Football Season!
And I’m hungry.
There’s just something about watching the game with cold beer makes me crave chili.
Hot, delicious, spicy, meaty, saucy, chili.
It’s kind of sad to admit but I actually use it like a topping…on everything…
Hamburgers, hot dogs, crackers, biscuits,
rice, cornbread, zucchini (yes, I said zucchini. Don’t knock it until you try it!)…
Nothing is safe in my kitchen from getting chili-fied!
The problem is that making good chili, I mean really great chili, takes allllll daaaayyyy.
And I don’t know about you, but I just don’t have the time for that…so I cheat…kinda.
I usually make it halfway then throw it in the slow cooker so that I can go about my day & not have to worry about my stove being on if I leave the house.
A little bonus is that slow cooking your chili also gives the flavors a chance to really develop & meld together leaving you with one delicious ol’ bowl of goodness!
The chili I am sharing with you today has to be one of my absolute FAVORITES!!
(and not just because I make it).
But be forewarned: It is not for the faint of heart.
I use roasted poblano chiles, jalapeños cayenne pepper, chili powder, & ground chipotle peppers to really layer the spicy flavors. Sounds downright ulcerative, right?
But I find that by adding all the different chiles to it, you don’t just get a mean burn on your tongue when you taste it. You actually get a smoky, roasted spiciness that lingers on your tastebuds just long enough for you to enjoy it.
That being said:
I cannot stress enough that this WILL be spicy.
You may NOT be able to handle it.
You may need something to DRINK.
To this I say :
Grab a beer.
Put on the game.
& eat some damn chili.
How to Roast A Pepper:
I used my gas stovetop but you can use any grill to achieve this! I simply use heat safe tongs to hold the pepper & place it directly over the open flame until the skin starts to “blister” & almost look burned. I turn my stove up to HIGH, place the pepper directly on the grate & turn it occasionally using the tongs to get an even blister all over the pepper. I even stand it up on it’s stem to blister the top!
Then I place the blistered peppers in an air tight ziplock bag to allow them to “steam” for about 10 minutes as I prepare the rest of the veggies. This will allow the blistered skin time to get soft & become easy to “peel” off from the rest of the pepper.
Once the pepper is ready, I remove it from the bag, hold it by the stem & rub off the burnt skin with my other hand if I am using gloves or you can use a paper towel. It is messy so do it over a bowl or your sink! After it is clean, I split open the pepper & remove the stem & seeds. You should end up with a pepper that looks like this:
Now on to the rest of the recipe!
I like to measure out all of my spices first so that when the time comes to add them, I’m not fumbling with the measuring spoons & overcooking my meat. The best part of this chili is that you don’t have to add seasonings separately, you can just put them all in a bowl & add them together!
Chop/dice/mince the garlic, bell peppers, jalapeños red onion & poblanos. Separate the garlic because it goes in after the veggies are soft. Place these veggies in a heavy pot or pan & cook until soft. Add garlic & cook for 1 additional minute.
If you are a cook you know you have that one torn up spoon you love to use.
This is mine. His name is Stirrup
Now add the meat! I used ground beef & pork sausage but you can use ground chuck, turkey, or ground pork. I like the flavor that the beef/sausage combo gives this dish but if you are watching calories or are a vegetarian, feel free to experiment!
Once the meat has no more pink left in it, add the seasonings & continue to cook until it starts to smell delicious (about 4 minutes).
Once the meat mixture is done, set aside & prepare your slow cooker.
I add my beans, tomato sauce, tomato paste & chicken stock to the slow cooker, stir it all together & BAM. Done. Easy, right?
Add the meat mixture to the slow cooker, stir all the ingredients together, cover, set to HIGH (if cooking for 2-4 hours) or LOW (if cooking for 6-8 hours).
Walk away & prepare yourself for some good ass chili.
This is before the slow cook:
And this after the goodness has set in! Yum!