A few years ago my wife and I visited some friends in North Dakota. We were invited to a gathering with their friends. For days in advance everyone was euphoric in anticipation of Bob’s Chili.
I like chili. I think it’s near one of those perfect blends of ingredients that one can exist totally. I’ve never heard anyone say, “I hate chili.” It is universally loved. The reason; with the exception of burning it, you can not ruin it. If you just toss the main ingredients together and heat them, somebody in the crowd will likely say, “That’s the best darn chili I’ve ever had.”
Back to North Dakota. As a precursor to build anticipation for Bob’s Chili my friends continually said, “Oh boy, Bob is making his chili. It’s the best for miles around. He would enter it in a contest, but he’s so shy. He would not know how to handle all the attention.”
The night of the gathering came and Bob brought a large crock-pot full of his much anticipated chili. As he walked in the gathering people parted as if bringing the King’s coronation crown on a satin pillow.
“You’re going to love this,” my friend said. “For years to come you’ll tell everyone about Bob’s North Dakotan Chili.”
I ladled a bowl and tasted. I’ve had Rice Puffs straight from the box with more taste.
My friends smiled and said, “Keep in mind this is North Dakota; catsup on meatloaf is taking a walk on the wild side.”
Anyway it wasn’t anything a couple of shakes of Tabasco couldn’t repair.
So here is my chili recipe;
1 pound of lean ground beef (better than 80/20, try ground chuck)
1 cup of diced onion
½ cup of diced green peppers
Combine these ingredients and cook them in a large pot.
1 can of beer
12 ozs of beef stock (water with two beef bullion cubes)
2 cups of washed unpeeled diced Idaho Russet potatoes
Bring these to a boil in separate pot. Drain the liquid and add to the ground beef mixture.
1 can of tomatoes (30 oz. approx, crush by hand)
1 can if tomato paste (6 oz. can)
1 can of kidney beans (30 oz. can)
Add these ingredients. Set to a low flame.
Immediately add the following;
3 tbls of chili powder
2 tbls of paprika
2 tbls of powdered cocoa
1 tbls of salt (or to taste)
2 tbls of Worcestershire Sauce
2 tbls of Tabasco Sauce.
Allow to simmer for at least fifteen minutes.
Thinly slice a jalapeño.
After you bowl the chili add a dollop of sour cream and sprinkle a few slices jalapeños on the top.
You will not find this in North Dakota. In fact this might even get you jailed or escorted to the state line.