Luckily, that first experience didn't scare me away from chili, and I've made it about ten dozen times since then. I can now confidently say that you will not burn off your tongue anymore. In fact, I now have several different versions depending on who I'm cooking for. For example, if I'm cooking for Peter and I and our friends, we like it with a little kick. But for a very large diverse group, I will keep it sweet and mild. This time, my dad asked me to make it for his Super Bowl Sunday party. Because my mom can not stand ANY heat at all, I made an extremely mild and sweet chili version for their party. This is the version I will share with you today. If you want to kick it up a little bit, simply add more cayenne pepper.
- 4 cans Stewed Tomatoes, approximately 15 oz each (I usually try to get some sort of 'zesty jalapeno' or 'mexican seasoning' version of stewed tomatoes, but really- it doesn't make a huge difference what type you choose)
- 3 cans Kidney Beans, approx. 15 oz each
- 2 cans Black Beans, approx. 15 oz each
- 1 can Whole Kernel Corn, approx. 15 oz each
- 2 large Onions, diced
- 2 large Bell Peppers, any color, diced (Green adds more color variety but tends to be a little more tart-smokey in flavor; Red has a much sweeter taste to it. I prefer the red bell peppers for this recipe, but I just get whichever is less expensive)
- 1 Jalapeno pepper, deseeded and minced
- 1 lb meat
- 1/3 cup Ketchup (optional. Basically, this is a source of sugar and salt to flavor your chili. Sometimes I even forget to add it and it is delicious anyway. If you are watching your sodium levels, skip the ketchup. If not, it's a nice hint to boost the flavor)
- 1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
- 1 Tablespoon ground Paprika
- 2 teaspoons ground Cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon Cayenne Powder, (if you like it a little spicy like I do, add 2 teaspoons)
- Use low sodium canned ingredients
- No added salt
- Lean ground meats, such as turkey or buffalo
- I use grape seed oil for sauteing here, because it can withstand the cooking process better than other common oils. This is due to its higher 'flash point' (the point at which oil breaks down during heating). In nutrition terms, this means that it retains its health properties at higher cooking temperatures than do other oils.
- Beans provide lean protein and are also a great source of fiber for the heart healthy diet.