Saturday, November 12, 2011

Nana's Chili

Our good news: Hubby and I welcomed our little bundle of joy on October 14th at 7:39am. Her name is Emma Naomi after her great great grandma Emma and great grandma Naomi and we are ridiculously head over heels in love with her! Having a baby is the most amazing experience ever and, although I haven't forgotten the misery, I can't wait to do it again in a year or two. For now, we are just loving Emma and enjoying every second with her.

Now for the food! About a week after Em was born, I was really craving comfort food and this recipe wouldn't leave my mind. This is my Nana's (better known as Naomi!) recipe, so it was fitting that I make it to celebrate Emma's arrival. Nana may not have been here to welcome Em, but I know she was watching. Just eating her chili made it feel like she was close. And this is good chili. It's just spicy enough and full of goodness with lots of beans and delicious spices and flavor. I'm writing the recipe as we make it, which means that we don't dice the onion or green bell pepper and we don't sauté it with the ground beef. My dad hates onion and green pepper, but the flavor is necessary, so the onion goes in whole and the pepper is quartered. This is how I've always eaten it, so this is how I chose to make it. And it didn't disappoint. Comfort food in a bowl!

Nana's Chili
*From Naomi

1 pound ground beef
1 large onion
1 green bell pepper
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon basil
1 1/2 teaspoon oregano
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon red pepper flake
1 can stewed tomatoes
2 cans tomato sauce
2-4 cans dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed (I use 4 because the beans are my favorite part!)
1 large can tomato juice

Brown the ground beef and season with garlic powder and onion powder. Drain the fat and add two tablespoons brown sugar. Stir.

Add the ground beef and then the other ingredients, except the onion and green pepper, to a large pot and stir.

Quarter the green bell pepper and remove the ribs and seeds. Peel the onion and add the whole onion and pieces of pepper to the chili and stir.
Cook on low heat for 3-5 hours (or all day in a slow cooker), stirring occasionally. Remove the onion and bell pepper before serving. Enjoy!

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