I’m going to do things a little differently today. Let me jump right into the Chili recipe from Kate Tietje’s In the Kitchen – Real Food Basics:
1/2 lb. kidney beans, soaked overnight
1 lb. grass-fed ground beef
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 small onion, chopped
2 Tbsp. chili powder
1 Tbsp. molasses
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. sea salt
6 C. tomato juice, OR 3 C. puree and 3 C. filtered water
The night before you want to make chili, pour the beans into a glass bowl and cover with water by at least 1″. They need to soak at least 6 hours. In the morning, cook beef and onion in a frying pan with olive oil over medium heat until beef is no longer pink and onions are soft. Put meat mixture into a slow cooker. Drain the beans and add them. Add all the spices, vinegar, and tomato juice. Cook on low 6 – 8 hours, or high 3 -4 hours. Serves 3 – 4.
Prep time: 10 minutes, Cook time: 3-8 hours
Serving Suggestion: Top with onions and raw cheddar cheese and serve with sprouted cornbread!
Doesn’t that sound fab?! Now, I’d like you take a look at the very first ingredient. And then the very first line of the directions. Pretty easy to spot that you need to begin this the night before, huh? Not for me! So I was very surprised when, around 5pm yesterday, I set about to make chili for dinner and – oh crap! (Luckily I had yummy chicken salad leftover from Tuesday, so that, along with some mustard greens, was our dinner.) So, I began soaking my beans last night and put it all in the crockpot this morning. I’ll have to give you the verdict on Monday (but it looks good, no?).
Canned beans wouldn’t be a good substitute. The canning process, although it softens them, does not break down any of the anti-nutrients in the beans. (See this FAQ for more information about soaking beans, as well as grain, seeds and nuts.)
Hopefully you’ll be using grass-fed, pastured ground beef. Remember that it is naturally leaner and won’t brown the same as fattier meats. You really don’t want to overcook grass-fed beef.
In lieu of olive oil, I used a bit of butter (it was left in my pan from this morning’s pancakes) and bacon grease. I try to avoid heating olive oil (although the Weston A. Price Foundation indicates it is safe to moderate temperatures), and instead use it for salad dressings and cooler dishes. (Some of you may also have found that with your unique physiology, you gain weight when adding olive oil to your diet. This is due in part to the long-chain fatty acids in olive oil.)
I also threw in a whole onion, and substituted apple cider vinegar for the red wine vinegar. Finally, I had a bunch of tomatoes from our CSA and so I opted to make the puree. I cleaned and cored my tomatoes, and threw them in the food processor, skins and all, and came away with a beautiful, smooth tomato puree. I’m very much looking forward to dinner tonight!
The contest to win In the Kitchen – Real Food Basics closes at midnight tonight (11.12.10). I will place all of the entries into a big hat (actually, probably a stockpot) and the winner will be chosen at random by my daughter, Abigail. She is four years old, full of integrity and cannot be swayed (unless you happen to be a Disney princess) so this system is beyond reproach. The winner will be announced on Monday, along with a coupon code for those of you who don’t win. So, here are the ways to get your final entries in:
1) If you haven’t already, visit my first post this week for up to two entries.
2) Use the ‘Share’ button below to share this post on Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, your blog or through email. (Remember to leave a separate comment for each one!)
3) Comment below and tell me about a time you royally screwed up dinner, and what your family ended up eating.
Just a note: Following the giveaway, I’ll be switching to a new host for my blog. Stay tuned for news on that so you don’t miss a post!
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