Black Dog Chili

I thought I didn’t like chili.  Then I had my future mother-in-law’s Black Dog Chicken Chili and was stunned as to what I had been missing.  It was the first (of many) recipes I got from her.  This recipe was also my introduction to cumin (I know, so late).  Now, as you will notice from my recipes, I use cumin all the time.  I use it in Mediterranean, Mexican, Indian, and many other dishes.  It gives them a wonderful smoky flavor that verges on spicy, but really only reminds you of spicy.

But I digress, back to the chili.  She says the recipe is from the restaurant Black Dog in Raleigh, N.C., but I don’t think it still exists, so it is her recipe to me.  The first few times I made it with chicken, as the name states.   I then noticed that I always pushed the chicken to the side of my bowl and ate around it.  The next time I just omitted the chicken and I like it so much better this way.

This chili is filling and fairly healthy.  It keeps great in the freezer for later in the month.  Also it’s really simple to make and doesn’t take too long.  I usually serve it with some corn muffins.  (Why muffins?  I prefer muffins to breads and cupcakes to cakes, because they stay moist longer, in my opinion, and everyone gets their own.)  I like to garnish the chili with fresh cilantro or parsley, cheese (anything that melts nicely), fresh tomatoes (farmers’ market if in season like now, or grape tomatoes), and plain yogurt.  (It works great as a sour cream substitute and I like it better.  I always have it on hand.)

Disclaimer for chili purists:  Yes, I understand that you don’t think that chili can be chili if it has beans and no meat.  My solution you can call it Black Dog Bean stew.  That way you can still enjoy it and not worry that you are tainting the chili name.

Black Dog Chili

adapted from my mother-in-law’s Black Dog Chicken Chili Recipe
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 6 oz can whole green chiles, chopped
2 cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups vegetable broth
14 oz can stewed tomatoes, broken up (or chopped)
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (depending on how spicy you want it)
1/2 bunch cilantro, minced

In a stock/soup pot or dutch oven add the oil and bring to medium heat.  While the oil is heating, chop the onions and then add them to the pot.  Season the onions with salt and pepper then saute them for 4 to 5 minutes until they are tender.  While the onion are cooking, chop the whole green chiles and mince the garlic.  Add the garlic and green chiles to the pot and for 1-2 minutes.  Add the beans, chili powder, cumin, oregano, cayenne, cilantro and stir together.  Add the tomatoes with juice and the chicken broth.  Combine ingredients and bring to a boil.  Once boiling reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 30-60 minutes (the longer the better).  Garnish with cheese, plain yogurt (or sour cream) and fresh tomatoes.  Serve with a smoky corn muffin and enjoy.

Smoky Corn Muffins

1 package JIFFY Corn Muffin Mix
1 egg
1/3 cup plain yogurt
1/2 teaspoon paprika

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and grease or butter a muffin pan (6-8 cups).  In a bowl stir together JIFFY Corn Muffin Mix, egg, plain yogurt and paprika with a fork.  The batter will be slightly lumpy.  Allow batter to rest for 4 minutes.  Fill the muffin tin cups 1/2 to 3/4 full of batter and then bake the muffins for 15-20 minutes or until the are lightly browned and a knife comes out clean when inserted in the middle of a muffin.  Serve warm and enjoy.


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