I have seen quite a few kitchen mishaps in my time.
Everything from cuts to bruises to burning hair to accidentally leaving bits of themselves in the food. But, that is a story for another time.
Or maybe not.
My Dad makes kick ass chili. Just the right amount of spices. Kidney beans and ground beef sauteed to perfection. Dad always made chili on the nights when Mom worked and we looked forward to it.
The time finally came for me to make it for my own friends after college and I was going to do it right. We would see what a real cook could do!
Tying back my shoulder length hair so I could see, I set to work. After a quick trip to the grocery at which I spent what seemed like half of my paycheck, I grabbed pans and cutting board and went to work.
No canned beans for me! For shame! I started the red kidney beans soaking in the morning.
Ground beef? Not me. Only the finest ground chuck would do for me. .
Generic tomato juice? Horrors! Heirlooms tomatoes it would be. And, I would juice them myself or not at all!
Chopping the onions, I browned the meat and put it in the pot. It smelled great. Then I added the beans to the mixture.
Then it was time for the tomatoes. Slicing them, I placed them in the KitchenAid and started it running. Crushed tomatoes started flowing into the pot with the spices and the meat.
Damn! I had forgotten the spices!
Cracking open the hot sauce I poured it into the pot with the meat. Maybe a little more. On an impulse, I took a sip and….Damn! That shit was HOT!!!!
After I put out my tongue, I opened up the chili powder. The label said “Guaranteed fresh!” which was nice as the stuff I normally bought at the store was probably so old it was ready for Social Security. My God did that smell good!
It was actually a little addictive. Sniff. Whoa. My head began to spin.
Sniff….I could almost imagine the smells of Mexico. I could almost smell the rain.
SNIIIIIIIIFF! My head swam as I closed my eyes and leaned back until…..
My head wrap went flying as I tried to regain my balance and then –
SMASH! as my head hit the bowl of the KitchenAid and –
YOW! My hair got sucked into the grinder and before I knew it I was struggling to keep my hair from being sucked further into the grinder with one hand while I fumbled for the power switch with my other hand.
That is how I came to be face down in a pot of uncooked chili. I almost drowned.
Needless to say, I served burgers that night.
Now let’s do it right:
5 lbs. ground beef
2 1/2 lbs red kidney beans
2 gallons tomato juice
8 large tomatoes
First, soak the beans for at least three hours in a large soup pot. If you do not have time, five 8 oz. cans of beans will work.
Next, dice the onions. Brown the onions in a skillet with the meat. Place in the soup pot.
Crush the tomatoes and add to the pot along with the tomato juice.
Place over a medium heat.
Once it is on a low boil, add the chili powder and hot sauce to taste.
Cook for two to three hours and serve with enough crackers to sink a boat.
COPYRIGHT 2016 Micheal J. Hobbs