Food for Friday

We’ve just had a day of cool rain, and it left in most of us a desire to stay home, warm and dry by the fire, with a nice bowl of soup or chili ~ so here’s my favorite chili recipe.  This is actually a Weight Watchers recipe, making it both good tasting and good for you.  Now, in my family, on the Sunday nights when we didn’t get pancakes for supper, we sometimes got chili over scrambled eggs – don’t knock it till you try it, I’m just saying!

I think I copied this down over the phone many years ago, so I can’t quote the publication date, but I know it is from a Weight Watcher’s cookbook published some time in the last 20 years.  This is one of those that freezes well when you make a big batch.

I just call it “Chili” in my little book of handwritten recipes.

1 lb. ground beef cooked in 2-1/2 C water; pour off the water and refrigerate both the meat and the water.  After it has cooled, skim any fat off the cooking water and save 3/4 C to use as stock.

1/2 C green pepper, chopped
1/2 C celery, chopped
1 canned hot jalapeño pepper, diced (this makes it too hot for me so I leave it out)
1/2 garlic clove, minced (I put in the whole thing)
4 oz. onion, chopped

1 15 oz-ish can of tomatoes with juice, chopped (now they are available chopped in the can, yah!)
1 C tomatoe sauce
1 T chili powder, to taste
1/2 t black pepper
1/4 to 1/2 t Cayenne pepper or hot sauce (I usually add a 1/4 t of Cayenne and a few splashes of Tabasco sauce)
1/8 t cumin
2 cloves, 1 bay leaf
Salt to taste
1 lb can kidney or pinto beans, drained and rinsed

Sauté the first 5 ingredients (I usually do this in a splash of olive oil).  Add all the other ingredients, including the meat and stock.  Simmer for 30 minutes.  Enjoy!

Occasionally I have added fresh sliced mushrooms at the sauté stage.  And I sometimes over pepper, defeating the whole purpose in skipping the jalapeño.  This is when the “over eggs” really works well, as they help to cut the extra spiciness.

C = Cup; T = Tablespoon; t = teaspoon

Rainy fall days are some of my favorites, when wet tree trunks really contrast yellow leaves to their best advantage.  This morning there was a heavy fog, and I noticed red leaves standing out in the mist.  At lunch time, it was the oranges catching my eye after the mists had dissipated.  Tomorrow should be sunny again, and I can’t wait to see what colors have developed in the last few days.  We’re getting there, people!

~Janet @ The Christmas Place

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