Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Christmas Eve Chili

UPDATED INGREDIENT: I used PINTO beans, not kidney beans. I've made the correction to the recipe below. Ooops!

The chili I made on Christmas Eve actually went over really well with the family. (Pictures in the slideshow are of the night we had chili.) I kept track of the ingredients that I used so I could share it here. I read many recipes online then decided to concoct my own.

Something I have learned: I didn't realize that chili is meat only, but chili con carne is chili with beans. I made chili with beans. This is the first time I've made chili without opening a can of chili! It was fun ---but did take some time to make.

I found a great ham bone to use plus I added two pounds of moose burger. The 6 cups of pinto beans were soaked overnight, (you can use less beans for smaller crowds). As you know, Christmas Eve was on Sunday, so I had to get the meat going before I left for church. I put it all into a large crockpot then cooked it all morning into early afternoon. My daughter ventured into the liquor store to pick up wine which I had decided I would use, after reading recipes. She brought home Cabernet Sauvignon, a strong flavored and red wine.

Mom told me this before, "If you boil and spill the water out, and boil it again and then spill the water out, your beans won't be so potent..." So, that is what I do with beans ----for less local tooting. My son Klint's wife, Calli said, "The wives thank you!"

So all that said, I will show you the recipe I ended up with and have named "Twin Lake Chili with Beans."

Twin Lake Chili and Beans (Mild)

In a large crockpot:
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 large, fresh ham bone (not cured) (approx. 2.5 lbs)
2 pounds moose burger (or hamburger)
2 chopped onions (large)
4 large cloves fresh garlic
4 chopped and crisply fried bacon slices
5 beef bouillion cubes
3 tablespoons chili powder (Add more if hotter chili is desired)
Cook all the above in a crockpot for 5 1/2 to 6 hours

Cover rinsed, cleaned and soaked pinto beans with water and bring to a boil in a large soup pot. Drain beans and refill with fresh water, bring to a boil again and drain. Once again add enough water to cover the beans, salt to taste. Gently boil and cook the beans until tender but not mushy.

Drain half of the boiling water from the beans, add the tender crockpot meat to your soup pot.

To the soup pot add:

2 cups red wine
2 large cans Italian recipe tomatoes, (diced with garlic, oregano & basil)
1 6 oz. can tomato paste 2 teaspoons pepper, if desired.

Simmer for an hour then serve with your favorite crackers, bread or top with grated cheddar cheese, sour cream and chips.

This recipe makes a big pot of chili! It is a very good amount to make for large crowds. Just having my family over is a large crowd! I would suggest that you use a smaller amount of beans if you desire a smaller pot of chili.

Did you try this recipe? Let me know how it turned out. Thanks!

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