Chili of The Goddesses

i.e. REAL Comfort Food: Food that soothes your absolute soul because A) it’s not only decadently soothingly divine while you’re eating it, B) there is zero remorse afterward. Ahhhhhh. See what I mean? REAL comfort. Teeing you up perfectly to wear that sleek little sweater dress you’ve been saving for winter!
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REAL Comfort Food is definitely on the agenda! A quick day-trip to Chi-town has me missing The Goddess of Fennel Pollen (long story) even more than I usually do! Ironically, she was making a day-trip to NYC at the same time. The stars are obviously not aligned right now.

Points for me for using the word “ironically” correctly!

By the way, “ironically” and “literally” are the most misused words of all time, which all my fellow English majors out there will agree, is the equivalent of hearing nails on a chalkboard each and every time (English majors live a tortured life), which brings me back to much needed REAL Comfort Food. (For correct usage of the word “literally,” see P.S.A. below.)

To cap it off, this Chicago trip slapped me with my first snow-sighting of the season. I’m not ready to part with autumn yet. I know you guys aren’t either. To comfort us all (English and non-English majors alike), I bring you: Chili of the Goddesses! Tips and tricks in the video below:

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Ingredients:

– 2 lbs. ground meat—bison, turkey, beef—whatever turns you on :) Just make sure it’s hormone and antibiotic free
– 4 cloves of garlic minced
– 2 large green bell peppers chopped (feel free to add a yellow, red, or orange bell pepper too if you want to add some color and even more gorgeous nutrients)
– 2 large onions
– 3 fresh jalapenos for all you Spicy Goddesses out there OR a Cubanelle pepper for a tamer Chili of the Goddesses
– 4 cans (14.5 oz each) of diced tomatoes (the fire roasted kind are killer and if green chilies are already added then you just saved yourself a step)
– 2 (4 oz.) cans of chopped green chilies
– 2 tbs. chili powder
– 2 tbs. cumin
– 1 tbs. cayenne pepper
– 1-2 tbs. crushed red pepper flakes
– 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
– 1/2 cup dry red wine (I like using Malbec but Merlot, or Cabernet will do the trick as well)

Directions:

Put your ground meat in a saucepan and toss the minced garlic on top of the ground meat. Turn the stove on to medium low. As the meat is browning, take a spatula and slice into it, breaking it apart in the pan so that the meat cooks evenly and becomes crumbly. Naturally, you’ll be smushing the garlic into the meat at the same time without an extra step.

While the meat is cooking, grab a big soup pot, add your diced onions and peppers and a tablespoon of olive oil and saute for about 3 minutes until the vegetables are slightly softer. Just slightly softer, not completely soft.

Once the meat is browned (no longer pink at all) use a pot or pan lid to drain off the excess fat from the pan.

Add the meat to your pot that’s full of veggies. Then, add all 4 cans of diced tomatoes and stir.

Then add all of your spices (chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, crushed red pepper flakes, and cinnamon. Don’t forget the cinnamon! That’s the secret to this whole amazing thing!

Then, let it simmer as long as you can take it. At least 10 minutes. 20 minutes is better. 30 is ideal. The longer it simmers the more deliciousness (i.e. comfort) will occur.

Public Service Announcement: Here’s a quick rule of thumb on how to use the word “literally.” If you can replace it with the word “actually” then, chances are, you’re using it correctly. The word “literally” is used when you want to let your listener know that you’re not just using a common phrase, that something really did happen exactly as it sounds. For instance, when someone says to you, “Today, my head was on fire.” You assume they mean that they felt overwhelmed today. But if they want to let you know that today, at one point, their scalp was actually covered in flames, then they will say, “today my head was on fire, literally” so that you get the picture.

Another (maybe more realistic) example would be if, let’s say, you were running down the sidewalk not paying attention and boom, you slam right into your boss, knocking her down. When you’re retelling the story to your friend, you would say, “What a disaster! I ran into my boss this morning…literally.” See how it kind of creates a fun surprise ending for your listener? They were expecting to hear a story about how you randomly came across your boss on the sidewalk but the “literally” adds suspense, an unexpected plot twist, and a vivid picture!

Unfortunately when it’s misused, it’s a huge let-down. For instance, when you hear someone say, “I was literally up to my ears in jell-o.” I immediately picture them buried in some pit filled with lime green jell-o struggling to get free, but then it turns out that they just ordered 2 cases of jell-o online by accident and now they’re stuck trying to figure out what to do with it. Lame-o.

Don’t be lame-o. Use “literally” responsibly. :)

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