Chili is one of those things that I make with regular frequency during the New England autumn and winter. I usually start in the early afternoon so that by evening I have a large batch of spicy goodness to eat while watching my fantasy football team fall apart.
My version of chili is not fancy. I don’t stew my own tomatoes or make my own tomato sauce. I don’t soak beans over night. Instead I head straight for Trader Joe’s and pick up several cans of tomato sauce and a variety of canned beans.
I don’t eat beef so I usually use either veggie meat crumbles or turkey. For this particular batch I started with a sautéed onion, tossed in some lean ground turkey and at the last minute decided to toss in some diced jalapeño. As the turkey started to brown I added a variety of chili powders from Native Seeds (in Tucson, Arizona).
I tried visiting their website a moment ago with little luck (site timed out). Ordinarily you can order chili powders online. My favorite is Negra Pasilla, a dark smokey chili powder with a bit of heat.
My secret ingredient, and really a must, is a variety of diced roasted peppers.
After I’ve drained and rinsed the canned beans I add everything to my slow cooker.
And then I play the waiting game!
I picked up a six-pack of Sierra Nevada’s Ruthless Rye which is a fantastic pairing. Speaking of rye, last night at a White Birch Brewing beer tasting I asked the brew master if rye was trending. Interestingly, he said that rye is very hard to manage during the brew process and so it’s become a “pissing contest” among breweries to see who can get the highest percentage of rye malts into their brew. The more you know!
Finally, I like to top my chili with a bit of creme fraiche and of course some shredded cheese.
Now go make some chili.