Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Spicy Pork Chili

Shortly after I got married, I was desperate for recipes that my husband would enjoy.  While visiting his sister, I asked if I could copy some of her recipes, figuring that if his sister likes it, he will most likely like it too.  She gave me some really delicious recipes, including this one.  In fact, as I write this, I have some simmering on the stove and the smell is driving me crazy!  I have made a few adjustments to make it more cost-effective, but it still tastes pretty much the same as the original version.

Some reminders regarding cost-effectiveness.  Wait until the pork goes on sale.  I often find it under $2/lb and freeze it.  Also, instead of buying canned beans, buy dried and make them yourself!  It's so easy to make them in the slow cooker!  Finally, serving this over rice not only tastes good, but makes it more cost effective as well.  Rice adds bulk for pennies!  It also tames some of the spice, for those who don't particularly like spicy.

This recipe calls for jalapenos.  When handling jalapenos, I always wear rubber gloves, because the pepper contains capsaicin (which is what is used in pepper spray) and will burn if you touch your face or eyes with your hands after handling the pepper.

Most of the heat is contained in the seeds and membranes.

I removed most of the seeds and the membrane.

I made sure to wear gloves as I finely chopped the jalapenos.
Spicy Pork Chili
1 1/2 lbs pork loin, cubed
1 large onion, diced
2 celery ribs, diced
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp olive oil
3 1/2 cups great northern beans
4 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 Tbsp chicken bouillon
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp pepper
1/4-1/8 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp cumin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp dried parsley
1/4 tsp hot sauce
1 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese

In a large pot, heat the butter and olive oil over medium-high heat.  Add the pork, onions, and celery; cook until pork is browned.

Stir in beans, water, bouillon, jalapenos, chili powder, pepper, cayenne, cumin, garlic, salt, parsley, and hot sauce.  To be honest, I'm not sure if 1/4 tsp of hot sauce really does much - I mean, I probably use more than that when I eat a burrito - but we'll throw it in anyway!  Also, a reminder on the cayenne.  You can always add more, but you can't take any out.  Start out with a smaller amount and add more after tasting.

Our hot sauce of choice!

Bring to a boil; reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 1/2 hours.  Remove lid and simmer for an additional 30-40 minutes, or until chili reaches the desired consistency.  Remove from heat; add cheese and stir until melted.  Serve over steamed rice if desired (this is how I like to eat it) and with a side of cornbread.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that this can be made in the slow cooker.  I haven't tried it yet, so I can't vouch for it, but I'm guessing it will work.  Simply brown the pork and saute the onions and celery as written in the original recipe.  Add all remaining ingredients (except cheese) to the slow cooker and cook on low for 6 hours (I'm guess on the time here).  About 30 minutes before it's done, add the cheese and allow it to melt.  Next time I make this, I'll try this method and let you know how it works!  Or, if any of you try it, please let us know!


Kristin said...

Whoo-Hoo! I made the blog!:) Actually, I have to give credit to my mother in law..she is the one who gave me the recipe!

I never thought to add thanks for that "addition"...I am sure it helps to thicken it up a bit!

And, yes! You can do this one in the crockpot!

Kiefler said...

I just made some pork soup this weekend, and if you wanted an alternative to rice, you could use hominy! I love its dense hearty-ness.

I used mine in the soup. You could probably use it to supplement / replace the beans.

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