Growing up in Southeast Asia, chilli simply meant chilli peppers. So as kid, when I read books where people were eating a hot bowl of chilli, I used to think they were crazy! It was only when I was in high school did I find out what eating a bowl of chilli really referred to.
According to an old South-western American Indian legend, the first documented recipe for chilli con carne came from a beautiful Spanish nun – Sister Mary of Agreda. However, according to Spanish missionaries, Sister Mary never left Spain! So, in fact, no one really knows how this dish originated but it is a dish most embraced by Texans. In fact, the 36th President of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson claims this: “Chilli concocted outside of Texas is usually a weak, apologetic imitation of the real thing. One of the first things I do when I get home to Texas is to have a bowl of red. There is simply nothing better.”
Some people are big fans of chilli huh? To me, it’s a good, hearty stew of meat and beans. Very comforting on a cold day but it’s something I would only make once in a while, and probably only in winter.
I tried my hand at making chilli the other day. It’s a simple task of browning the mince and onions and chucking everything else in the slow cooker. I used (and modified) this recipe that is written specifically for a slow cooker.
Result: I loved it. It was rich with the chunkiness of the cooked beans and sweetness from the tomatoes. It could have done with a bigger spice kick though – more cumin and chilli powder next time! Instead of sour cream, I topped the chilli with guacamole which gave a nice, creamy finish to the dish.