#TGIM! Did you all remember to Spring forward? Gotta love losing an hour of the day… 😉
Another Monday is upon us — they always come around quickly, don’t they?!
There are many good things about Monday, but one that’s become more and more apparent lately is the fact that it means hardly any leftover banana bread.
Every Saturday, Bobby and I buy a gigantic bunch of green bananas. By mid-week, roughly a quarter of them are gone. By Friday, they are just ripe enough to make a few batches of whipped banana oatmeal. By Sunday, they’ve turned completely black on the outside, perfectly mushy on the inside and are that just-right consistency for Nicole’s banana bread.
By Monday, the loaf is half way gone, thanks to a certain someone’s voracious appetite (it’s not me)!
This fact makes me happy
While I was in the kitchen getting various types of flour all over myself, I tweeted to check out what others have been baking over the weekend.
- Marathon Val baked Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies (link to her recent post about them)
- Angela made Tropical Lemon Coconut Muffins (can I go on Spring Break now?!)
Anyone else? Leave a link to your baking recipe in the comments section!
Speaking of delicious recipe creators, today I am delighted to bring you a Guest Bender from my close friend and “neighbor” (seeing as how we are both Chicagoans), Mara from What’s For Dinner? She is going to share a recipe on the subject that she clearly knows well — delicious dinners!
Chili: It’s What’s For Dinner
Hi Eating Bender readers! My name’s Mara, and I write a little blog called What’s For Dinner? I’ve have the pleasure of becoming Jenn’s friend over the last year or so, and I’m so excited to be a Guest Bender!
I have a bit of a “thing” with making chili. See, when I was a little kid, our birthday parties were chili parties. My mom would make 2, 3, or sometimes 4 different pots of chili of varying spicinesses (is that a word?), different meat content (always beef, turkey, and vegetarian, even before vegetarian was “cool”), and always with the obligatory toppings. Little bowls of condiments were always scattered around the living room and kitchen, full of cheese, sour cream, white onion, green onion, and sometimes hot sauce. I have an attachment to chili.
When I first started to cook, a simple chili recipe was always a success…except when my pot (yes, I had on pot) started losing its non-stick coating and I burnt a batch. My simple chili is as follows:
- 1 lb. lean ground beef , turkey, or meat substitute
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 green pepper, diced
- 2 Tbsp. minced garlic
- 2 29 oz. cans crushed tomatoes
- 1 29 oz. can dark red kidney beans, drained
- 1 29 oz. can light red kidney beans, drained
- 1 14.5 oz. can Ro-Tel
- 1 14.5 oz. can salt-free corn, or same amount corn kernels
- 1/4 c. hot chili powder
- pinch red pepper flakes
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
Heat olive oil in a large pot. Add garlic, onion, and pepper, and cook until onion is translucent. Add your protein and brown thoroughly. Add all ingredients except the corn, bring to a simmer, and then reduce heat to low. Cook about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the corn, stir well, and cook until the corn is heated through. Serve!
Then, I started making variations. There is a vegan chili with adobo and bulgur now, as well as a delicious recipe for chili mac. But I was on a mission. I wanted the perfect chili that I could make time and time again, and finally, after dozens of tries, I think I’ve got it.
Introducing: Chili Con Carne y Frijoles (Chili with Meat and Beans)
- 2 lbs. beef, cut into 1″ chunks (I used top round)
- 1 32 oz. can crushed tomatoes
- 1 14 oz. can diced tomatoes with jalapeños, drained
- 1 6 oz. can diced jalapeños
- 1 medium white or yellow onion, diced
- 2 14 oz. cans dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 14 oz. cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp. garlic powder
- 3 Tbsp. chili powder
- 2 tsp. cumin
In a large slow-cooker, place the meat, tomatoes, and peppers. Stir well. Add beans, spices, onion, and vinegar. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Serve and enjoy.
So there you have it Eating Bender readers… my adventures in chili. Cook, enjoy, and happy topping!
She is fabulous, isn’t she? It’s crazy to think that we met just over a year ago at a meet-up with Rose and another foodie friend at Thai Spoon + Sushi. We’re also coming up on the anniversary of our full day foodie adventure — I think we’re going to have to find a way to celebrate!
Speaking of anniversaries…
Tomorrow is Eating Bender’s two year blogiversary! Yet another example of time flying. These past two years of blogging have quite frankly been the two biggest years of my life. I’m so glad I’ve been able to share this time with you. Expect a sappy post tomorrow
But first, let’s answer a question for Mara: what’s your favorite chili topping?
Mine has to be the cheese. I love when it gets all melty and gooey with every bite!