Thursday, February 5, 2009

It's Chili by George!!

For those of you who are residing in Ohio like myself I am sure you can relate to the fact it's cold outside and I am tired of all of this snow already. When it comes to the seasons, winter is at the bottom of my list of favorites. Saturday was our weekly family dinner and when trying to come up with something to make I decided I wanted something quick, easy, and warm for the belly, so I settled for a nice big pot of chili. You can't go wrong with chili when the weather outside is miserable.

This recipe for chili was one I found on and it has been my go to chili for some time now. I have never been a big chili fan but this is one I can say I actually enjoy. Daniel and I both like to add some shredded cheese to our bowls and Daniel also adds some chopped onion.

It's Chili by George!!

2 pounds lean ground beef
1 (46 fluid ounce) can tomato juice
1 (29 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (15 ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon white sugar
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/4 cup chili powder

1.) Place ground beef in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium-high heat until evenly brown. Drain, and crumble.
2.) In a large pot over high heat combine the ground beef, tomato juice, tomato sauce, kidney beans, pinto beans, onions, bell pepper, cayenne pepper, sugar, oregano, ground black pepper, salt, cumin and chili powder. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Simmer for 1 1/2 hours. (Note: If using a slow cooker, set on low, add ingredients, and cook for 8 to 10 hours.)

Sorry no was eaten before I could grab a picture or two.

Cajun Meatloaf

As I mentioned in my profile I absolutely adore Ree Drummond who is the author of the blog, She is living the life I have fantasized about since I was a teenage girl reading the hand me down romance novels my Grandma used to buy. I can still picture it, married to handsome yet rugged cowboy, a mans man but still a helpless romantic. A cowboy that would sweep in on horseback and rescue me from the life I lived in little ol' Bellbrook to live happily ever after on his family owned Ranch in the middle of no where. I would be the loving wife and mother, responsible for caring for her family and making sure all of the handsome ranch hands were fed during the cattle drives.

Fast forward to the year 2009 and I am married to an ex-Navy man, Mustang loving, young boy at heart and the only cattle/ranch hands I can see are two Great Danes and a hefty Black Lab. Instead of living on a sprawling ranch far far away from Bellbrook, I am living in a small ranch style home a stones throw away from Bellbrook. I guess that's why they were called fantasy's, it's no where near my reality. Not that there is anything wrong with my reality, well except maybe the ranch style home. I think my Husband would agree with me when I say it would be nice to take him and our little cattle and move across the country and live on some wide open prairies out there. Maybe someday Sweetie...don't forget to pick us up a lotto ticket

Anyway, three days after I started this entry :), I love a majority of the recipes that Ree posts to her site and when this one popped up I knew I had to give it a try. I love meatloaf, especially my Step-Mom's. Meatloaf with a side of mashed potatoes, green beans, and a slice of buttered bread, mmmmm.

Cajun Meatloaf:

*3 Bell Peppers (2 if they’re large) - I’m using a red, orange, and yellow. Any color works well.
*2 Medium Onions (I used 1 lg. which was plenty)
*1 bunch of Celery (5-6 ribs)
*8-10 Cloves of Garlic
*3 Eggs
*6 Tablespoons of Butter (I used 8 tbsp.)
*1-2 cups of Breadcrumbs
*1 tsp. Ground Nutmeg
*1 tsp. Black Pepper
*1 tsp. Cayenne Pepper
*1/2 Cup of Milk
*1 Tablespoon Worcestershire
*1 Cups of Ketchup
*2 Tablespoons Honey (I did not use the honey)
*2 lbs of Lean Ground Beef
*1 lb of Ground Pork

1.) Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2.) Chop all of the fresh vegetables (peppers, onions, celery) into a small dice and mince the garlic.
3.) Over medium high heat melt 6 tbsp. butter. Once the butter begins browning add the vegetables and garlic. Add about 1 tbsp. of salt. After these have cooked for a few minutes add worchestire sauce, black pepper, nutmeg, and cayenne pepper. Next add about 1/2 cup of ketchup. Continue to cook while stirring for a few more minutes. Remove from heat.
4.) After allowing the mixture to cool for a few minutes add 1/2 cup of milk. Stir until combined. Next add at least 1 cup of bread crumbs. Continue adding bread crumbs until mixture is a nice thick paste.
5.) In a separate bowl place the ground beef and ground pork, whisk three eggs and add to meat.
6.) After allowing the vegetable mixture to cool down, begin incorporating into meat. Keep working together until the meat and vegetables are well blended.
7.) Spray a sheet pan with non-stick cooking spray. Next, using your hands, form your meat mixture into a loaf on the sheet pan. Make the loaf around 6-8 inches wide and about 1 1/2 inches thick.
8.) In a small bowl mix together 3/4 cup of ketchup and about 2 tbsp. of honey. Slather this sauce over the top of the whole meatloaf.
9.) Place in oven and bake for about 40 minutes.

This recipe makes quite a bit of meatloaf which is good as I have been trying to make recipes that will go the extra mile when it comes to leftovers. I was a tad worried when I added the nutmeg and I think next time I will try it without, it was good either way. The final decision was going to have to come from Daniel and I knew this was a keeper when I talked to him this morning and he said he was eating a piece of meatloaf for breakfast, after he had eaten a piece for a snack when he got home from work last night.

Sorry that there is no picture of it after it was finishing baking, I think we all know what meatloaf looks like though!