A week of rain and chilly temps calls for chili! What does a kat from the Land of Steady Habits know about making chili, you ask? I can only say, “That’s the way–uh-huh, uh-huh–I like it!” The base recipe came from a friend of mine years back. Over time, I’ve modified it considerably to create what I’m sharing with you here. Best of all, you can do the same to make it your own. Or maybe you’ll like it just the way it is!


1/2 a large onion, diced
olive oil
1.5 pounds ground chuck (you can substitute ground turkey or ground chicken)
1 teaspoon Adobo
1 28-oz. can crushed tomatoes
1 can tomato paste
1 can white beans, rinsed
1 bottle of beer
1 tablespoon soy sauce
scant tablespoon granulated garlic (or 3 cloves garlic, pressed–throw it in with the onion if you choose to take the fresh path)
1 bell pepper, diced (I prefer red or orange or yellow, but green works, too)
1 tablespoon chili powder*
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (no kidding!)
1 teaspoon sugar

*I use 1 teaspoon Penzey’s medium hot chili powder, 1 teaspoon ancho chili, 1 teaspoon chipotle

Saute onions in olive oil till golden.

Add ground beef, sprinkle with Adobo. Once cooked, drain juices.

Add spices.

Add tomatoes, paste, beer and bell pepper.

Simmer till chili begins to thicken (15-20 minutes). This is a great time to put a lid on it so the chili doesn’t splatter all over your stove.

Last, add the beans.

Top with cheddar, and serve with some tortilla chips or cornbread. Yes, easy, delicious, homemade cornbread! Can I tell you about it later?

Katty’s Chili!

It’s challenging to take a picture of a black katty on a dark, rainy night. Her expression cracks me up, though. Long live The Queen! And cheers to her chili!