At Last, The Chili
I put the chili on hold when My Beloved brought home surprise lobster rolls. I made the right decision, although the chili was good, too, the next night.
Cookiecrumb inspired me to make chili from scratch, something I have rarely done. My chili has usually been made from canned beans and tomato sauce, chili powder in a little glass jar, chopped onions and browned hamburger. In other words, I didn't make chili, I more or less assembled it.
This time, I soaked the black beans overnight, browned the hamburger (I wasn't inspired enough to start with whole meat), sautéed the onions, cooked the beans in homemade broths (beef, lamb), added chopped tomato and the red chile once the beans were tender, and ladled it into bowls two days later topped with Fritos, which are a guilty pleasure of mine.
It's superior chili, no doubt about it. The flavor of the peppers was mild, as I had been a little wimpy with the fresh chiles from Chilebrown, but the overall flavors were rich and deep. It tasted as I suppose chili is meant to taste, earthy and humble and inspired all at the same time. It's a whole different dish than my canned-and-bottled variety.
Am I being churlish to say that I'll probably go back to my old way? It's not just for the ease of preparation, either. Although it's not as authentic as this chili, I liked the lightness of flavors just a little bit better. I'm glad I tasted this as it taught me to be a little more adventurous with the spice, so it's all good, even if it did take two days from idea to chili bowl.
Labels: chili peppers