One of the great benefits of winter weather is the food that goes with it. It’s the season of pot pies, soups, stews and, most importantly, chili.
Chili – more formally referred to as chili con carne (aka chili with meat) – first became a hit in the 1900s when chili joints spread from Texas across a country that couldn’t get enough of the salivatory combination of beef, chili peppers, garlic, and cumin. As chili became more popular, a number of establishments even started claiming to have a secret recipe.
Since then, the “secret recipe” concept has sprung up a diverse landscape of recipes and a number of informal and professional chili cookoffs. Chili innovators have consistently turned out new and delicious recipes. It’s almost as if chili follows the same path as computer processors and doubles in variety or spiciness every 18 months.
This year, it could be a newly discovered “hottest pepper” or some sort of unforeseen combination of ingredients that takes the chili world by storm. And, all this perceived innovation based upon your position on the ongoing metaphysical arguments on whether adding beans to chili still makes it chili.
But what does this really all boil down to? Well, some pretty delicious chilis we can run across in our lifetime. Some solid time around our own stovetops imagining our own chili greatness. And, most importantly, satisfied appetites and time with friends.
For your next chili adventure, consider the four recipes below.
Burnt End Chili: This chili was developed by one of our own chefs. It is the perfect combination of one of Kansas City’s best barbecue innovations and America’s favorite stew.
Chili Verde: Chili Verde is a pork variation of chili made with green chili sauce. This chili is very different from “red chili,” but with its own unique deliciousness.
Bloody Mary Chili: This seems to be the today’s trending chili. The combination of a favorite tomato-based morning drink and tomato-based chili seems an obvious combination chili lovers should celebrate. Why it took so long for these two to be combined is actually a bit of mystery. Luckily, someone figured it out, and we all get to enjoy their discovery.
Grandma’s Chili: Okay, as much as we can enjoy all the chili innovation out there, there’s just nothing as good as Grandma’s chili. Try this recipe if you are still on the hunt for a solid chili recipe. Fair warning: this recipe includes beans.