Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Chili Cook Off

Today is post numero uno for Not Too Sweet. Its an important day because I am going to the Union Square Market to get locally grown onions and other veggies for the Spring Lounge Chili cook off this weekend. Then I'm going to Bonnie Slotnick's Cookbook store in the West Village to investigate old recipes. Bonnie's turned out to be a great success- not only did she give me several chili cook books to scan through and take notes, I bought one. It's a real gem! Chilis called Volcano and Tear Jerker, should make Sunday's festivities very interesting. The market was not as successful as it usually is, but there were tons of delicious pickeled veggies- I tried peprika pickled okra, not something I would usually grab but it was delicious! So I bought a jar. There were also lots of baked goods, fresh apples and hot apple cider. Not as many veggies as I was hoping for- slim pickings in the onions, beets and mushroom front.

We won People's Choice and Second place all around in the chili cook off!

  • Spices: cumin, mustard seed, chili, cayenne, paprika (smoked), rosemary
  • Meats: ground chuck (trimmed), sausage (linguica),
  • Veggies, etc: onion, garlic, chipotles (in adobo), kidney beans, canned tomatoes (Muir Glen fire roasted), beef stock, beer (Negra Modelo), tomato paste
  • Toppings: sour cream, shredded cheese, scallions

chop onion, garlic and chipotle
mix cumin, mustard seed, chili, cayenne and paprika (or use store-bought chili powder)
remove sausage from casing, chop/crumble, mix with ground beef, salt and pepper

1. sweat onions in a pan, add garlic and rosemary when onions are translucent, then add chipotles and some adobo
2. transfer some of the mixture into a pot on medium heat and add tomatoes, leaving some in the pan to flavor the meat
3. brown meat in batches in the pan, adding beer/broth and spices as needed
** meat clumps as it's browned, so use a processor/blender to pulse/puree the browned meat to control size/texture **
4. transfer browned (and pureed) meat into the pot and allow to simmer for 2-4hrs, stirring occasionally
5. stir in tomato paste and beer/broth if needed to achieve desired thickness
6. add rinsed kidney beans an hour before you plan to stop simmering
** over-night refrigerating isn't critical, but definitely improves the flavor **

- Garden of Eden (14th street & 23rd street)
- M&O's Deli, Prince street

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