The Awesomest Chili You’ll Ever Eat

Mmmm, simmering away...
Mmmm, simmering away…

Some people might think that I’ve set the bar a little high. But can you prove my chili isn’t the awesomest? I didn’t think so. When it gets cold outside, it’s the perfect time to make some chili. It’s nice and hot and if you like it spicy, that helps keep the chill away too. This is my favorite recipe (I’m actually making a batch right now.) It was adapted from the 5 Spot Chili recipe in the Blue Plate Special Diner Cookbook. That’s right, I said Diner Cookbook, so you know this is good. As with all real chilis, there are NO BEANS in this recipe. If you must have beans in your chili, I guess you could add some kidneys, but you’ll forever be on my chili blacklist.

Wendy’s Awesomest Chili You’ll Ever Eat

  • 2 medium to large onions (I recommend white or red), chopped
  • 6-8 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1lb ground lamb (this is my secret ingredient…oops)
  • 1lb ground beef (feel free to use a lean mix, there’s tons of fat from the other meats)
  • 1lb chorizo or hot italian sausage
  • 1 TBSP oregano
  • 2.5 TBSPs cumin
  • 1tsp salt (I don’t always put this in, there’s plenty of salt)
  • 1.5 TBSP chili powder (try the ancho or chipotle types)
  • 1 8-ounce can of tomato sauce (I use the no salt added kind)
  • 1/2 – 1 6-ounce can of tomato paste (the unflavored kind)
  • 1-2 chopped jalepenos (you can vary this depending on the amount of heat you like)
  • about 1.5 cups low sodium beef broth
  • some red wine (I’ll explain the amount later)

Preheat your oven to 350°. Next, heat some olive oil in a dutch oven and chop the onions and garlic. Brown the onions and garlic then remove from the pan. Brown each of the meats one at a time, removing any excess fat from the pan (unless you’re into that.) Add back all the meats and the onions and garlic to the pan. Add the spices, tomato sauce and paste, mixing well. Then add in the broth and wine. Make sure there is enough liquid to cover the the other ingredients, plus some extra that will cook off in the oven, maybe about 3/4 of an inch above the meat. Chop the jalepenos (make sure to wash your hands well afterward and DON’T RUB YOUR EYES!) and add them to the pot. Bring up to a simmer than put in the oven and cook about 2 hours (or until it’s the consistency you prefer.)

We serve our chili with oyster crackers, but you could use pasta, rice, barley, cornbread, corn chips, whatever. And if you must, you can add some cheese or sour cream as a garnish.

BTW, this would be great on Super Bowl Sunday after you’ve worked all day on your contribution to the SBC

PS – If this isn’t enough meat for you, the awesome (there’s that word again…) charcuterie, Rooster Street Provisions, that opened in Elizabethtown was recently featured in the Lancaster paper.