Chilli

Arh, me proud beauties! It do be time to do a recipe of ways piratical. One that if misused will result in you having to put your toilet paper in the fridge before use. I speak not of the Chilli that has been, but the Chilli that is yet to come. Chilli that will scour your stomach lining, ravage yer bowels, detoxifying as it goes. It’s also jolly good. Well I think so, and these are my recipes.

However, like all my recipes this is dead easy. So easy in fact that even a crusty old sod like me can get it right every time. This is the lowest common denominator of dishes which can be cooked in advance and stored in the freezer and even develop its flavour over time. It works with any meat from the cheapest of minced beef, through lamb, pork, chicken, moose, bison, elk, deer or even bear. The base flavour will alter a little with the meat used, but otherwise that’s all.

Ingredients:
1lb minced meat (preferably lean and not too fatty)
1 16oz can of crushed tomato, or 1kg of tomatoes which will need to be rendered down and liquidised first.
1 red bell pepper.
1 16oz can red kidney beans.
1 heaped teaspoon dried chili flakes.
1 teaspoon salt.
1 teaspoon chopped Garlic or half that of Garlic powder.
Black pepper to taste.
3 onions or 1lb (1/2 a kilogramme)
Worcestershire Sauce.
Balsamic Vinegar.
Olive Oil to lubricate cooking pans (Or any old cooking oil)

Equipment:
1 eight or ten inch (20-25cm) saucepan
1 twelve inch frying pan or wok
Wooden spoon

Method:
Chop and peel onions and throw into large saucepan with a spodge of olive oil. Put on a low heat to sweat down for half an hour until the onion is soft and translucent.

Put frying pan on medium heat and throw in a little olive oil to lubricate the pan. Throw in minced beef or whatever and stir until it is no longer pink but a muddy brown all the way through. Keep stirring for ten or fifteen minutes while it cooks through. This is essential for Bear and other similar game meats like Wild Boar or even low quality Pork because these meats can carry a nasty little worm that can give you trichinosis, believe me, this is a condition you do not want to experience. However, with the cooking times for this dish should kill any such ickiness and reward your palate to boot. Just cook until there is no trace of pink in the meat. A uniform muddy grey-brown is fine, and the less oil you use in the pan, the more likely it is to improve the flavour of the meat. Now add a dash or two of Worcestershire Sauce and a capful of Balsamic Vinegar to cut the fat and make the meat less greasy. Stir for a couple of minutes. Now add in the crushed canned tomato and add the Salt, Garlic and Chili flakes. Once this is up to heat and bubbling, add this mix to the sweated onion in the saucepan.

Now open your can of red kidney beans, wash and drain before adding to the cooking meat, onions and tomato. Stir in and put the saucepan back on a low heat. Chop your bell pepper into roughly half inch squares after taking out the stem and seeds before adding to the mix. Stir once every fifteen minutes or so to stop the mix burning to the bottom of the saucepan. Raw red kidney beans can be mildly poisonous, so they will need to be cooked thoroughly. About an half an hour of gentle bubbling and stirring should do it.

You can also stick the mix in a large deep casserole dish if you have one and bung it in the oven for an hour at about 320 degrees Fahrenheit or 160 Celsius. Either way, this will cook the dish beautifully without subsequent risk of lurgi. Be warned that you should not fill any pan or dish more than half full or it may bubble over and leave you with a difficult cleaning job. Best not to go there. I’ve done it. It ain’t fun. Alternatively, stick it in one of those handy dandy electric crock pots if you have one, and set to cook slowly until you get home. Who knows, your wife or girlfriend (If you have one, but this is a very sexist recipe) might suspect you’ve been taking cooking lessons to impress another woman, you faithless cad.

Add salt and black pepper to taste. Stir and cook for five more minutes to ‘set’ the seasoning.

It’s good stuff, and the basic recipe I’ve just outlined can be tweaked. A few more chili flakes, a pinch more or less salt and pepper or Garlic. You are the master here. Believe and your digestive system will love you forever.

Serve with steamed rice, or pasta, a slab of any plain or savoury bread or fries, Or even eat, North American style, on its own. Some people are known to add mushrooms or even tofu, but if you’ve cooked the mince properly, this is unnecessary. But then, some people want jam on it, the perverts. There is such a thing as vegetable chili, that’s only for degenerates.

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Expatriate expostulations from Canada; a.k.a. A Sarcastic man abroad trying to stay in the middle of the road without getting run over.

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