Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Award Winning From Scratch Chili Recipe (no canned goods allowed)

My favorite food of all time is homemade, really chunky chilli. Most chili recipes call for lots of canned goods - canned beans, canned tomato paste and canned tomatoes. The recipe below eliminates all the cans and adds some great (and unique) flavors that results in a meaty, flavorful (not too spicy, my kids love it) and all-natural chili that is sure to warm the coldest of bellies this winter. It's so good that I even won an award for the recipe at a recent chili cook-off! It was a new award, started just for it's uniqueness, the Most Unique Chili.

1 pound grass-fed ground beef
1 stalk of kale, cut into bite size pieces
1 cup dried kidney beans
1/2 medium onion, minced
1 shallot, minced
3 cups organic, gluten-free beef stock
6 medium - large tomatoes (I use Romas)
2 large, minced garlic cloves
2 bay leaves
3 TBS chili powder
1 TBS ground cumin
1 TBS paprika
1/2 tsp ground thyme
1/2 tsp salt (add more if needed)
2-3 cups of water

In advance you must prepare the beans. Take dried beans and cover them well with water in a saucepan. Bring water to a boil and then turn off. Allow them to soak in the pan for 2 hours. Drain the water out of the beans and cover them well with water again. Bring water and beans to a boil, lower temperature to a simmer and cover with lid. Should be softened within 1-2 hours.

Quarter and place all tomatoes in a food processor or high-powered blender (we use a Vitamix). Puree tomatoes. To make your homemade tomato paste, you need to simmer down 1 1/2 cups of tomato puree down in a saucepan until it is half to one-third of the amount (bring puree to boil, lower heat to a simmer). Place remaining puree in a stockpot. Once simmered down, pour homemade tomato paste into the stockpot with remaining ingredients.

Brown grass-fed ground beef thoroughly and add to stockpot. Add all remaining ingredients into the stockpot, including spices. Bring all ingredients to a boil, add more water if needed, and then lower temperature to a simmer. Simmer on low for about 1 hour OR place in a crockpot and cook on high for 1-2 hours. The longer it cooks, the better it tastes.