Chili may be my favorite comfort food. This past week, Austin was uncharacteristically cold, gray, and rainy for March. It was the perfect weather for a hot bowl of chili, with a little cheese on top and freshly baked bread to soak it all up.
This recipe is the best I’ve found – it has a nice balance of meat, beans, and vegetables while still keeping that nice, thick chili consistency.
- 1 (14.5 oz) can chopped tomatoes
- 1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
- 1-2 carrots, sliced
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2-3 stalks celery, chopped
- 1/4 cup white wine
- 1 pinch red pepper flakes
- 1/2 green bell pepper
- 1/2 red bell pepper (sometimes we substitute a handful of frozen pre-chopped red and green bell peppers)
- 1/3 cup bottled steak sauce
- 1-1.5 lbs ground beef
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley (or use frozen herb cubes)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Cook the beef with the onion in a skillet till brown, stir in the dry spices.
- Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 8 hours.
- Alternatively, you can cook in a large pot on the stove on med-high for 1 hour. If you choose this method, save the fresh herbs and beans, adding them when the rest of the ingredients have simmered and the vegetables are tender.