Monday, December 10, 2012

Five Alarm Chili

With only four weeks left in the football season, my Colts look like they have a very good shot at making the playoffs. It's amazing what a difference a year can make. Just like the playoffs, this week's chili is one I have been looking forward to for a while. Why? This one is spicy. Not just a little spicy, but kick you in the pants spicy.

The secret ingredient in this chili is the habanero chile. For this chili, I add three or four whole habaneros to the pot while simmering the chili, then remove them from the dish before serving. The secret, though, is to use a thin knife to poke a few holes in the habaneros prior to adding them to the pot. This allows the oils from the hottest part of the chile to be released into the sauce and really kick the heat of this chili up. If this sounds too spicy for you, just skip the habaneros. Or if you are a glutton for punishment, try adding a couple drops of my favorite hot sauce, Dave's Gourmet Insanity Hot Sauce. Just don't add too much.

Five Alarm Chili

1 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 lbs ground beef or turkey
1/4 cup chili powder
1 Tbsp cumin
2 Tbsp oregano
1 can (29 oz) diced tomatoes
1 can (15 oz) tomato puree
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 cup beef broth
3-4 habaneros
3 cans chili beans

In large stock pot or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Saute onion and jalapenos in oil 3-4 minutes. Increase heat to medium high and add garlic and beef. Cook, stirring often until meat is browned. Stir in chili powder, cumin, and oregano. Cook another 2 minutes.

Stir in tomatoes, tomato puree, tomato paste, and beef broth. Pierce habaneros in several places with a thin knife. Drop habaneros into chili. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, 45-50 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove habaneros and discard. Stir in chili beans and let simmer another 5 minutes. Serve with crackers, cheese, and/or sour cream, if desired.

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