Sunday, October 26, 2008

Slow Cooker Success

So I've rarely had success with the slow-cooker. Once in a while I make something wonderful, but I've never been able to improvise with it. This time was no exception. I followed the recipe perfectly. I found this recipe in Cook's Country Magazine, and actually made it a long time ago and absolutely loved it! And Blake has been talking about it since. But for some reason I never got around to making it again. But while we were planning our menu for the week, Blake mentioned that it was getting cold (it was raining like crazy yesterday), so he wanted something warm and comforting. And I thought I should finally make this chili again. So here is the recipe for the world's best slow-cooker chili. (eat it sparingly though ... this stuff is HEAVY!)

Slow-Cooker Chili
serves 10 to 12
1/2 C chili powder
1 T ground cumin
2 t ground coriander (a.k.a. dried cilantro)
1 t dried oregano
1/2 t cayenne pepper (use less if you like it less spicey)
1/2 t red pepper flakes (")
6-8 oz bacon, chopped
2 onions, chopped medium
2 red bell peppers, chopped medium
6 cloves garlic, grated or minced
2 lbs 85% lean ground chuk
salt and pepper
1 (28 oz) can tomato puree
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
2 (15.5 oz) cans dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  1. Toast chili powder, cumin, coriander, oregano, cayenne, and pepper flakes in deep pan or large dutch oven over medium heat until fragrant, about 2minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
  2. Add bacon to pan and cook over medium heat until crisp, about 8~10 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and discard all but 1 t of remaining fat.
  3. Return pot to medium heat, add onions and bell peppers, and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  4. Add beef, 2 t salt, and 1 t pepper. Increase heat to medium-high and cook, using wooden spoon to break up the beef unto 1/2 inch pieces, until slightly pink, about 5 minutes. Drain beef and vegetables in a colander.
  5. Add tomato puree, diced tomatoes, and toasted spices to empty pan and bring to simmer over medium-high heat, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Return beef and vegetables to pan. Stor to combine, and bring to a simmer. Transfer contents to slow-cooker insert.
  6. Set slow-cooker to low, cover, and cook until tender, 6 to 8 hours, stirring in beans during last hour of cooking. Adjust seasonings and serve.
Left overs can be stored in fridge for several days, or in the freezer for several months.
Also, you can do all through step 3 the night before, simmering for an extra ten minutes. Then simmer everything for 10 minutes in the morning, and then throw everything in the slow-cooker for the day.
Also, I recommend using a slow-cooker liner when making this dish, otherwise your slow cooker insert will probably stain orange.


Lisa Allen said...

I'm making chili this week for our Ward Halloween Party, so this recipe will be perfect! Thanks for sharing :)

Lillian said...

Lisa, it's on page 9 of the June/July 2006 issue if you want to check it out there:) Good luck making it for the ward! I'm sure they'll love it. It's cook's country, after all.