Sunday, January 27, 2008

IF YOU LOVE CHILI Please Pay Attention...

You must try this recipe if you love chili. WOW! I made it tonight and it just blew me away.

I once considered myself a chili God in my own mind. Admit it, there are a lot of chili recipes and experts out there. They hold intimidating competitions and if you watch The Food or Travel Channels they make you feel as if your personal culinary concoction, taste and effort is not worth half-a-shit and you are less than a man. Bobby Freaking Flay, I challenge YOU to a Chili "Throw Down" whatever the hell that means. And IF you piss me off I will kick your pasty-white freckled ass all the way back to Manhattan. Tonight, I claim to be the new chili king of all time. But I had some help.

One day in the mail a new magazine arrived. It was a trial issue and contained all of the usual solicitation cards and stuff. It had color photos and a format that suggested “retro” in color and design. Once I took a close look it was published by…Chris Kimball, the editor of Cook’s Illustrated. This publication is very different from Cook’s. The recipes featured are quick ‘n’ easy and don’t take a lot of work. They are filling a food void for the home kitchen and I am sure this publication will be another hit. It’s called “Cook’s Country”. Here is one recipe that really caught my eye.

It’s not as if I discovered some new secret to chili heaven. I have about five different chili recipes but rely on two of them to make me really happy. One is a chemistry experiment and the other is a Greek recipe made famous in Cincinnati. I wrote about it a while back and the response here on the blog was a huge snore.

I am a huge fan and subscriber to Cook’s Illustrated Magazine. They also produce “America’s Test Kitchen” a television show broadcast on PBS. It’s shown locally in the Chicago area at 2pm on Saturdays. Check your local listings.

I rarely miss a show especially during the winter months. It’s THE Consumer Report for those of us who love to cook. They publish the magazine in two colors, black and white. No color photography at all probably because they want to remain impartial. No ads either. They test recipes and cooking tools well before publishing and recommending a winner. They take the guesswork and experimentation out of cooking great food at home. I have followed many of their recipes and have never been disappointed.


OK, get ready for some kick-ass chili. First, gather all ingredients and start the prep. If you want to save time, having everything ready sure beats wasting time fumbling around for stuff.

What attracted me to this recipe were the words, "First, chop and cook some bacon". As Emeril would say, "PORK FAT RULES. BAM!" Here is some pork fat rendering in all it's lusciousness. I usually gather the ingredients ahead of time in order to expedite my humble religious sacrifices to the Gods of the Scoville scale. Let's get it started, uh huh. First chop the bacon and render the fat. Oh, the humanity of it all!

Now toss in the cubed chuck. Just like this...

When the meat is ready combine all ingredients and draw the fire down to a low simmer.

Serve with fresh onions and the grated cheese of your choice. I was too busy eating this stuff to finish the post with a final photo. Sorry. Maybe next time.

Here is my final review.

-This Chili had tons of flavor
-It was a bit thin, could have used another hour or so of reduction
-The spicing was perfect.
-Tomorrow I will re-evaluate the flavor and texture because chili always tastes better the next day
-I will try a bowl with macaroni and cheese, just for chili-mac shits and giggles

1 comment:

Dan from Madison said...

Good post, love the photos. And of course, love chili. I will be subscribing to that mag as well.