LET'S TALK CHILI
Who doesn't love a nice hot bowl of chili? Spicy or mild, a bowl of chili is like a little slice of heaven. Well, today is National Chili Day, and we are celebrating our love of chili AND our love of coffee. We think together these beautiful masterpieces of human creation are the hallmarks of utterly blissful magic. Yeah, that's a mouthful, but gal-darn-it it's how we feel.
Enough about how we feel though, where do you stand?
CHILI VS COFFEE
A LITTLE CHILI HISTORY
"In the 1880s, a market in San Antonio started setting up chili stands from which chili or bowls o'red, as it was called, were sold by women who were called "Chili Queens." A bowl o'red cost diners such as writer O. Henry and democratic presidential hopeful William Jennings Bryan ten cents and included bread and a glass of water. The fame of Chili Con Carne began to spread, and the dish soon became a major tourist attraction. It was featured at the World's Fair in Chicago in 1893 at the San Antonio Chili Stand." (Www.nationalchiliday.com)
A LITTLE COFFEE HISTORY
Coffee eventually reached Europe and found popularity, but was initially declared to be the drink of the devil by the religions of the day. This sparked a great debate over the value of the energizing hot drink. Legend has it that the controversy grew to a point where the Pope himself intervened and gave it his personal approval. With this stamp of confidence, Java became a staple in Europe. Following the Tea Act taxation in the 1770′s, there was an uprising, later called the Boston Tea Party, which sparked the American Revolution. With the American demand to remove taxation from tea, there came a need to find another daily drink. Coffee was a natural substitute, and growers answered the call. With the American Revolution came a patriotic call to stop drinking tea like the English, and instead, adopt coffee as the national drink of the Americas. (Complete history of coffee.)
A CHILI RECIPE (ALL AMERICAN BEEF CHILI)
Regardless of how you voted, we are sure you could always use a tasty recipe for chili. Give this one a try, it is very, very, very good. Trust us. (Video of us making it.)
- 3 16-oz cans chili beans (pinto beans in mild sauce)
- 1 15-oz can tomato sauce
- 1 10-oz can diced tomatoes with green chilies (Rotel)
- 10 oz sliced cremini mushrooms
- 1.5 lbs ground beef, 85% lean
- 1 tbsp canola oil
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 1 bay leaf
- ½ cup brewed San Francisco Bay French Roast
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 ½ tsp salt
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- sour cream
- sliced or pickled jalapenos
- grated cheddar cheese
- cornbread wedges
- Heat the oil in a large, heavy bottomed pot or dutch oven over medium high heat. When hot, add the onions and sauté until translucent — about five minutes. Add the ground beef and garlic and cook until browned.
- When the meat has browned, add the mushrooms and stir well. Cook for five more minutes, until mushrooms become tender. Then, stir in the beans (with sauce), tomato sauce, Rotel and brewed coffee.
- Bring chili to a boil then reduce heat and simmer. Add the sugar, bay leaf, chili powder, cumin and salt. Continue simmering on low heat for 45 minutes, stirring often. Adjust seasonings according to your taste preference —- I added a little cayenne pepper here but you’ll want to taste it before going crazy.
- Serve chili in big bowls topped with sliced jalapenos, crumbled cornbread, cheddar cheese and dollops of sour cream.
Yield: 4-6 servings
GRAB A BAG OR BOX OF COFFEE WHILE YOU ARE HERE!