February 15, 2010

February 15 THE MONDAY MENU Tenderfoot Chili

The heat went out in my house last weekend, an emergency situation for which I was not prepared to handle. And yes, it got cold - real cold by Southern standards. We did manage to borrow a kerosene heater from a friend, but it only warmed up the front of the house and not the back where all of our bedrooms are.

Thankfully, the only thing we lost was the heat, so we were still able to cook while we waited for the repairman to come. Need I tell you that when your house is that cold nothing warms a body from the inside out like a fresh hot bowl of Tenderfoot Chili.

In other news, we will be holding a telethon at my house next weekend to raise money to pay for the repair bill.

Conversation starter: Share with you kids and grandkids how life was different when you were growing up. Explain how you did things as a kid without the modern conveniences we have today.


2 pounds pork loin trimmed of fat and cut into 3/4 inch cubes
3 cloves pressed or minced garlic
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 Teaspoon salt
1 Teaspoon fresh black pepper
1/2 Teaspoon ground sage
1 Teaspoon thyme
1 Teaspoon onion powder
1 Teaspoon smoked paprika
1 Teaspoon cumin
1 Tablespoon Chile Powder
1 Tablespoon flour -for thickening
1 medium whole jalapeno
2 -14 oz cans whole peeled tomatoes
2 -14 oz cans black beans.

Preheat olive oil in a large cast iron pot(preferred). Add pork loin, salt, and pepper and cook over high heat for three minutes stirring often. Add garlic, chili powder, cumin, and paprika and cook for another eight to ten minutes until meat is thoroughly browned, again stirring often. Reduce heat to medium and add tomatoes and remaining herbs and whole jalapeno. Bring everything to a simmer then reduce heat to low and cover. Continue simmering for thirty minutes stirring occasionally. After thirty minutes add beans including the liquid and let simmer an additional fifteen minutes, stirring occasionally. At this point taste to see if any additional salt is need. If so, season to taste.

To thicken, remove jalapeno then sift flour into chili and stir. Simmer on low another ten minutes. Serve with corn chips, cheese cilantro, diced onions, or a dollop of sour cream. Chili is best when refrigerated overnight and reheated the next day.

Personal Chef Tim Wade is the owner of Culinaria, a personalized, food-oriented educational program designed to help novice and intermediate cooks become more knowledgeable and more proficient in the kitchen.

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