About this recipe
Canadians are always asking, "Hey, what about us?" So here you have it, an Italian rendition of one of your favourites.
Place a Dutch oven on the stove; turn heat to medium and fry:
- 2 tbsp. olive oil,
- 1 cooking onion (diced).
When the onion is tender, add:
- 2 cloves garlic (minced),
- 1½ lb. lean ground beef (not extra-lean),
- 2 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. chili pepper.
Brown the beef and break up into small pieces. When the released water is cooked off, add:
- a splash of white wine (½ cup),
- 2-3 large carrots (sliced large),
- 2-3 stalks celery (sliced large).
- 2 (19 oz.) cans pinto beans (drained and rinsed).
Sauté 5-10 minutes, and then add:
- 1 (10 oz.) can mushrooms (drained and rinsed),
- 1 (28 oz.) can plum tomatoes (hand-squashed),
- 1 cup water (use the tomato can and swish out the remains).
Cover and bring to a boil. Then turn heat down to low and simmer for 1 hour, stirring often to make sure nothing sticks to the bottom.
Uncover and simmer a few more minutes until it starts looking good (remember, chili thickens as it cools). Let cool for 30 minutes before serving.
Serve with French bread or over rice.
- Chili is always better served the next day.
- Stir from time to time when cooling to release heat.
- Make sure you have sufficient carrot and celery—it’s really important.
- If you're in Phoenix, try red or green bell pepper in place of the celery.
- You can substitute red kidney beans, but it's a Mexican dish and they put pinto.
- Don't get freaked out by the wine; it's just added for flavour. If you don't like wine, leave it out.
When you make chili, make lots. I like to rehydrate 2 lbs. dried pintos (which yields 5 cans) and double everything except the mushrooms.