Since a picture is worth a thousand words, I've been working diligently to take more pictures of the food I've been making. Since I am a little bit absent minded, its been some time since I've actually did anything with them.
First off there is the chili I made for New Years Eve. I made it for a friend's party last year and decided to make the NYE Chili a tradition. My chili is never the same anytime I make it, as I put in whatever is looking good in the produce section when I shop. I do try to stick to a loose guideline:
Onion, garlic, (carrot, celery), green onions, green, red, orange and yellow bell peppers, canned beans, no salt added diced tomatoes, (jalapeno pepper), steak, and sometimes mushrooms.
Nothing fancy, I just like it colorful; the prettier, the better. As for seasonings, simple salt and pepper, a little bit of chili powder, and cumin to make it smokey. I add each to taste.
The method is usually a chop and drop operation, starting with some EVOO in the bottom of a heavy bottomed pot on medium heat. Slow cooking veggies go in first and everything is diced. Once the veggies are in and have softened a bit, in goes the canned beans and the diced tomatoes. I use a variety of beans for even more colors; red kidney, pink beans, white beans, black beans. Drain the beans before you add them. Tomatoes go in with their juices, usually two to three cans. Then add enough stock (chicken or vegetable) to cover. From here you can season and simmer until you are ready to serve. I will often transfer the veggies to the crock pot before adding the beans, tomatoes, and stock, and let it simmer there for several hours.
If I do add meat, it will always be steak. Leftovers are fine, or broil a cut or two before you cut it into bite size pieces and add to the chili. I find that ground beef gets lost in all chaos. Chunks of meat do not.
I serve my chili over pasta, and top with shredded cheese and sour cream.