Somebody told me recently that they had searched for a standard chili recipe on my website and couldn't find one. Whoa...WHAT?! I cannot believe I haven't shared this recipe until now! It's a tragic oversight and I hope you will find it in your chili-loving heart to forgive me. Dan and I have been making this recipe for years and I recently tweaked it, pushing it over the edge into the realm of chili super-greatness. I love this recipe. And guess what? It's another snowy, cold day in which eating a heaping bowl of comfort is just what I need.
In a large skillet, cook 2 pounds of ground beef, turkey or venison over medium-high heat until the meat is no longer pink.
Transfer the meat to a bowl. Drain the excess grease from the skillet, but do not clean it. Leave those tasty meat morsels right where they are so they can mingle with their new veggie friends.
Add 4 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil to the skillet and heat over medium-high heat.
1 yellow or white onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
2 jalapeño peppers, finely chopped (optional, but highly recommended)
Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions and garlic are fragrant (mmm, don't you love the smell of cooking onions and garlic?!) and the onions and peppers are soft, about 5 minutes.
Remove the skillet from the heat and add:
3 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Stir it all together and resist the temptation to start eating those delicious, spiced onions and peppers.
There are two ways you can finish up, depending on how much time you have. If you have the time, I recommend using a slow cooker. If you don't have the time, the chili will be just as delicious and you can finish up on the stovetop.
Either throw the entire contents of the skillet into a slow cooker or keep them where they are.
Either way, add:
Cooked ground beef/venison/turkey
46-oz. container tomato juice
28-oz. can diced tomatoes
15-oz. can tomato sauce
16-oz. can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
16-oz. can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
Mix everything together. Yum! Getting hungry yet?
If you are using a slow cooker, cook on Low setting for 7 to 8 hours, stirring occasionally. And test-tasting often, of course.
If you are using the stovetop, bring the chili to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to medium-low and simmer for 1 to 2 hours, depending on how much time you have.
Serve warm with a bit of shredded cheddar cheese and a dollup of sour cream.
Oh sweet chili-eating goodness, I'm heading downstairs to make myself a bowl!