Friday, January 7, 2011

Chili Days!

When it is blowing COLD outside, a huge pot of chili can make it feel good! This dish is sure to fire you up, but if you need it a little more mild, you might want to cut the chili powder in half. For those of you that don't mind a HOT kick, I say throw it all in!


1/2 tsp butter
1/2 onion, chopped
2 stalks of celery, chopped
1 large carrot, small thin coins
1/4 cup white wine (or water if you don't have it)
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 LG (40.5 oz) can kidney beans, undrained (or 2-3, 15 oz. cans)
1 can (7 oz.) tomato sauce
1 (14.5 oz) can, fire-roasted tomatoes, diced
1/4 cup chili powder
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1 TB garlic, minced
1 TB cumin, ground
2 TB paprika
1 TB oregano
1/2 lb ground sirloin (or turkey if you are watching calories) (always hormone/antibiotic free)

1. Brown the meat and set aside.

*Nutritional tip- Rinse your cooked meat under hot water in a colander. You will save yourself much fat and calories by getting in this habit. After the meat has been rinsed, place it back in the pan and add a few spices to flavor it again. Possible spice choices are pepper, parsley, garlic, or an Italian seasoning blend. You can use these spices in place of salt to help watch the sodium in your diet. Do this every time you brown meat to cut down on saturated fat.

2. Place butter in a stock pot. On medium heat, saute the onion and celery for 4 minutes. Add the garlic, wine, vinegar and carrots to the pot. Let simmer for a few minutes until carrots soften.

3. Place the undrained kidney beans, tomato sauce and diced tomatoes in the pot and add the chili powder, cumin, paprika, oregano and cilantro.

4. Mix in the cooked hamburger, simmer for 10-15 min. Stir well and serve.

This chili is great served with sour cream and tortilla chips! If it is too hot for you, then the sour cream can be used to tone it down!

Nutritional Tip:

Capsaicin is the component that gives peppers their heat. There are some interesting studies showing that eating hot peppers may help raise your metabolism for a few hours afterward. We are all aware of how eating hot peppers can make your mouth burn and your body sweat. By raising your metabolism you are changing how quickly your body burns off calories! The higher you can get your metabolism, the more calories you use up and not store as body fat.

Also, capsaicin is showing in some studies to release endorphins or 'feel-good' chemicals in us. Maybe that's the reason why chili is so good on a cold night? If there is enough chili powder in it, it could raise our core temperature for a few hours and give us feelings of comfort. You have to love a natural ingredient that can do that!

Let the wind blow, because we've got chili!

Much warmth to you all,

1 comment:

Alea said...

I love chili, but must admit to being a wimp when it comes to heat.