Saturday, July 2, 2011

Beer Chili

I've decided to come in from the sun for two reasons (a) I can never tell how much sun I've gotten until I allow the rays to soak in for a bit; and (b) I can't leave my faithful readers in the lurch.  Some of you have been telling me that you're reading the blog and loving the blog and that warms my heart!  Some of you have been telling me that you've started using the cookbooks we made for you last Christmas...and that makes me smile a strawberry seed-filled grin!  Keep reading, keep cooking and start commenting.

I was recently back in my hometown for a visit and was sharing this blog with my mom.  She was touched when she saw the name of the blog in the URL, which she interpreted as 'O Mom Good.'  Even though I corrected her, she has since begun commenting quite regularly (thanks mom!).  Maybe you'll see your name mysteriously in my URL and start joining the conversation...

Which today revolves around chili, but not just any chili--beer chili.  What makes it beer chili?  You put a beer in it and drink a beer while you make it.  Dark beers work best:  Newcastle (my fav), 1554, Becks Dark, etc.  I adapted this from another Vegetarian Times recipe, which calls for two bottles of beer and two chipotle peppers---two too many in my opinion.

Beer Chili
This chili cooks down quite a bit and usually makes five or six large servings.

1/2 - 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (depends on your palate)
1/2 tsp cumin
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 a large onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 15oz cans of bean (tri-bean blend or black beans), rinsed and drained
1 15oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes in juice
1 cup frozen corn
1 bottle of dark beer
1-2 tbsp cornstarch
A bit of water

1.  In a large pot combine chipotle pepper, oil, and cumin.  Cook until fragrant, about 1 min.  Add onions and cook another 1-2 min.  Add bell pepper and garlic and continue to cook 6-7 min, or until pepper is tender.
2.  Add beans, tomatoes, corn, and beer.  Bring chili to a boil.
3.  Lower heat and simmer uncovered for 45 min.
4.  If your chili didn't thicken after all that (mine didn't), make a slurry by combining 1 tbsp cornstarch with just enough water to dissolve it.  Stir into the chili.  Wait about 30 sec and check the consistency again.  If it's still not thick enough, make another slurry using the other tbsp of cornstarch.  Remember the chili will continue to thicken as it cools, so you may not want to add more than 2 tbsp.

This goes so well with Hearty Whole Grain Cornbread Muffins and a little bit more of the same beer you put in the pot!  If you want to use the rest of the adobo sauce in your can of peppers, try these Adobo Peanuts.

Hopefully we'll have pictures again soon...working out the necessary technical accoutrements!
Happy Fourth y'all!

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