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Author Notes: This is a simple recipe I created using ingredients most likely found in your pantry. I use ground chuck which is very flavorful, due to the higher fat content, and If possible prefer to pick out a chuck roast and have the butcher grind it fresh. By draining the meat well before continuing with the recipe you are left with all the flavor without the grease. By adding the spices to the chuck, onions and garlic and allowing them to cook for several minutes before adding the rest of the ingredients the chili is truly infused with flavor.
When my younger son was still living at home, and he’s a chili lover, he was always ready and willing to critique the chili when it was finished. Invariably, his comment was it’s great, but it could use more chili powder. I listened to him to a point, and the final recipe reflects this. He now lives in San Francisco and called me one day for the chili recipe. After which, he thanked me and told me he'll just add a little more chili powder!
One thing we both agree on is to serve it over macaroni. This is something I discovered while living in Chicago …and they call it chili mac! Just pour that spicy chili over some macaroni, garnish with your choice of cheddar cheese, onions, sour cream, whatever your preference, and enjoy, Chicago style! —dinner at sheila's
- 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
- 3 pounds ground chuck (if possible pick out a chuck roast and have the butcher grind it for you)
- 1 and 1/2 medium yellow onions, chopped
- 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons paprika, or 1 teaspoon paprika and 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon cumin powder
- 3 and 1/2 to 4 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 and 1/2 to 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1-14 ounces can crushed tomatoes
- 1-14 ounces can whole tomatoes with juice , or diced tomatoes with juice
- 1-15 ounces can red kidney beans, drained (if you like a lot of beans, add a can of cannelini beans, drained)
- In a Dutch oven or large pot heat 1 tablespoon of the canola oil.
- Saute the ground chuck, breaking it up, until brown and no trace of pink.
- Remove the browned chuck to a colander and drain off all the fat. Set aside.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of canola oil to the pot, and cook the onions and garlic until translucent.
- Return the ground chuck to the onion and garlic mixture.
- Season with the oregano, paprika, cumin, chili powder, salt and cayenne pepper. Stir to combine and cook for several minutes on medium heat.
- Add the tomatoes. Stir to combine.
- Cover with lid, reduce heat to low, and cook slowly for an hour.
- Add the beans, and continue to cook, covered on low for an additional 20 minutes.
- Taste to adjust seasonings.
- It 's even better the next day when the flavors have had a chance to meld.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Chili