Happy Monday slash 3 days before Thanksgiving!!! Or is it 2 days? Do you count today or not? Or do you count by sleeps? So back to 3 days because 3 sleeps?
Oh my gosh this conversation could make my head spin on any given day of the week. All 3 kids count differently and therefore could argue the fact at any given moment when talking about future plans. It’s actually quite comical to listen to… in the frustrating ‘I love my kids so much but please stop fighting’ sort of way. I try and keep it simple and go by sleeps. We sleep 3 times before Thanksgiving so in my world it’s 3 days from now. One of the few black and white facts in my world of grey.
This week kicks off my most favorite time of year…food and wine time. As if we needed the excuse…
Nothing makes me feel more creative than being in the kitchen with loved ones. There’s something so sacred about creating a meal together and sharing in the joy of taking care of each other through food. It’s a beautiful thing. Thanksgiving in my family starts off over a month of celebrating this way. Holiday parties, the night before the holiday parties, the night before the night before the holiday parties, actual holidays. What I’m saying is we pretty much find every excuse to cook and drink wine together. Even looking for new recipes to try via FaceTime across the country warrants this. And I love it. My people are an amazing bunch.
All of this planning and cooking, though, usually leaves me in quandary in the days leading up to the actual event. I’ll go and go and go all day, shopping and planning and prepping, and then 4 o’clock rolls around and I have the ‘oh #^&*’ moment of, ‘what can I make and feed and clean up and oh I’ll just order pizza and forget about it’. This year part of my planning has actually been in regards to those first days before the holiday when family is rolling in and I want to keep things simple, but also still take care of my people.
Chili has become a staple around here for a few reasons. One, it’s pretty easy to throw together if you have everything you need. The most time consuming part is the chopping and, really, doesn’t take too long. Two, it can sit in the slow cooker all day and be ready whenever hunger strikes. When I make this for dinner at least one, if not all, of the kids do a drive by right after school and then pretty much want dinner at 4:30 because of it. Which leads me to three…all three kids LOVE it.
My guys eat a pretty wide range of foods. They all have their things they don’t like, of course, and for some reason I thought this chili would be a turn off because of all the peppers and spice. But not the case. They devour this and want seconds. Hence, it becoming a staple in our home. Hence me making it this week early in the day so that I can move on to Thanksgiving prep as needed. Slow cooker sloppy joes a near second coming soon….ENJOY!
- 1 pound ground sirloin
- 1 slice bacon, chopped small
- 1 medium white onion, small diced
- 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and small diced
- 1 small green bell pepper, seeded and small diced
- 1 medium jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- salt and pepper to taste
- ½ cup amber ale (or omit)
- 28 ounces tomato puree
- 3 cups beef broth
- ¼ cup tomato paste
- 1 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- avocado, cheese, and cilantro for serving
- In a large stockpot, brown the sirloin and the bacon with 1 teaspoon of olive oil to prevent sticking. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- In the same pan, add in the onion through the garlic adding 1 more teaspoon of olive oil if needed (this may be unnecessary if there are enough juices left in the pan). Saute, stirring occasionally for 3-4 minutes until beginning to lightly soften.
- Add in the chili powder, cumin, oregano, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir for one minute more.
- Pour in the beer to deglaze the pan and use a spoon or spatula to scrape all of the brown bits into the mixture. Cook down for 1-2 minutes.
- Add in the beef broth and tomato paste and stir to combine.
- Gently stir in the beans and the beef including any juices that have accumulated.
- Place chili into the bowl of a slow cooker and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6 hours. To serve, garnish with avocado, cheese, and cilantro leaves if desired. ENJOY!