Three Alarm Chili

Just in time for Superbowl Sunday!

Chili used to be one of my go-to weeknight winter suppers.  I made it with plenty of onions, garlic, beans, and canned tomatoes which means that when I had a bowl of chili, I had a bowl of FODMAPs.   Since the weather has been so cold, I’ve really been missing this favorite lately.  This recipe is very meat-heavy and rich.  A little bit goes a long way.  If made without the hominy, it would be a good topping for nachos or a baked potato.

Be sure to READ LABELS when buying chili powder.  The regular chili powder available in most supermarkets is a blend of chiles, garlic, onion, and other spices.  Avoid this!  You want to find pure New Mexico (sometimes called Chimayo) chili powder.  The amount of chiles and chili powder you use is a matter of taste.  Though I often like to use cumin in my cooking, I’ve never been a fan of it in chili.  Feel free to add it if you wish.

This dish is best if made a day before you plan to eat it so that the flavors can really develop.  I like my chili spicy so I use the larger amounts of spices and peppers.

3 slices smokey, thick-cut bacon, chopped
1 half inch thick slice onion
2 garlic cloves, halved
2 lbs. lean ground beef or bison
1 – 2 tablespoons New Mexico chili powder
1 – 2 canned chipotle chiles in adobo
1 – 2 fresh jalepeno peppers, minced
1 can hominy, drained
salt and pepper

For toppings:

chopped scallion greens
minced cilantro
shredded cheddar cheese
reserved, cooked bacon

And for your FODMAP eaters:

chopped red onion
roasted garlic cloves
sour cream

Saute the bacon over medium heat in a large saucepan until rendered and crisp.  Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and reserve. Put the onion and garlic in the pan and cook in the bacon fat over low heat until they are very soft and lightly browned.  Remove from the pan and discard, leaving the fat in the pan.  Add the meat, jalapenos, chipotles, and chili powder to the pan and cook over medium heat until the jalapenos are soft and the meat is thoroughly browned.  Add the drained hominy and cook the mixture, covered, over very low heat for 45 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes or so.  If the mixture seems dry, add a little water.  When done, adjust seasoning with salt and pepper; refrigerate the chili for 24 hours.. Reheat and serve with toppings.

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Smothered Potatoes and Green Beans

This is a good dish for those cold winter nights.  I ate 3 helpings for my supper last night.  Green beans are safe according to the Monash University Low Fodmap Diet app.

3 slices thick cut bacon, chopped
1 lb. boiling potatoes cut into 3/4 inch cubes
1 lb. green beans, trimmed and halved
1 tablespoon white spelt flour
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup chopped scallion greens
salt and pepper

Fry the bacon in a saute pan until it is crisp. Remove it from the pan and reserve.  Add the spelt flour to the fat in the pan over low heat and stir until incorporated and without lumps.  Add the water and stir to incorporate.  Add the potatoes and green beans and bring the mixture to a boil.  Turn the heat down to a simmer, put a lid on the pan and let it cook for 20 minutes, stirring once or twice.  When the vegetables are cooked, add the reserved bacon and the scallions. Taste and adjust the seasoning. I like it with lots of freshly ground black pepper.

Smoked Trout Cakes

My husband hikes in parts of the Grand Canyon every winter.  Apparently, there is an effort going on in the canyon to eliminate non-native trout species.  The fish are removed from the water and smoked; the smoked fish are then given away.  We were the very lucky recipients of a large bag of smoked trout this year!  I adapted this recipe from one I found at epicurious.com.

For the cakes:

1 1/2 cups flaked smoked trout or other smoked fish like whitefish
2 tablespoons chopped scallion greens
2 teaspoons drained capers
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 cup fresh wheat-free bread crumbs
oil for frying

For the sauce:

1 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons grated horseradish
1/2 teaspoon paprika

Combine sauce ingredients and set aside.

Combine trout, scallion greens, capers, lemon peel, and pepper in medium bowl. Season with salt. Stir in egg, cream and 1/2 cup breadcrumbs to blend. Form mixture by 1/4 cupfuls into eight 1/2-inch-thick fish cakes.

Place remaining 1/2 cup breadcrumbs in shallow dish. Roll fish cakes in breadcrumbs, coating completely. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in large skillet over medium heat. Working in batches and adding more oil as necessary, cook fish cakes until golden brown, about 3 minutes per side. Serve with horseradish sauce.

Roasted Celery Root and Kumquats

I downloaded  The Monash University Low FODMAP app to my phone and am finding it very handy, though a bit pricey for an app.  It told me that even though celery is high in polyols that celery root (celeriac) is safe for a low FODMAP diet. So when I encountered some celery root at the grocery store, I bought one to try.  I also bought a $1 worth of kumquats to try and came up with this brilliant combination.  I served it with some venison tenderloin that I seared in clarified butter and sprinkled with the chili lemon zest salt.

1 celery root, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes
1 cup whole kumquats
1 tablespoon Lemon Fennel Chili Salt
2 tablespoons olive oil

Preheat oven to 400F.  In a heavy bottom roasting pan, toss celery root with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.  Roast in preheated oven for 15 – 20 minutes, until cubes are sizzling and starting to brown, stir.  Toss kumquats with remaining olive oil and add to roasting pan.  Roast another 15 – 20 minutes until everything is soft and well browned.  Remove from oven and sprinkle with the Lemon Fennel Chili Salt. Serve hot.