05 February 2011

Chili Cook Off: 3 Recipes From The Today Show

File:Bowl of Chili No Beans.jpg

3 awesome takes on chili recipes from cold weather comfort food to inventive and heart healthy.

From Denny: The Today Show put out the call to all its viewers, asking cooks to compete in a chili cook off. Hundreds of recipes were sent in. Can you imagine testing and tasting all of these chili recipes and trying to narrow it down to just three? That must have been a tough call.

The three finalists they chose really all deserve the prize. Each one is unique and each recipe is quite tasty. It just comes down to personal taste of you and your family. The third recipe is also a healthy chili recipe, using chicken and turkey and spices that are excellent digestives. A digestive sauce or spice helps your metabolism burn the calories faster and more efficient.

Looking at the recipes I'd say the first one, Hog Call Chili, would be especially good in the fall or spring seasons. I like the inventive combinations of unusual ingredients.

Michael's Chili is a heart healthy chili and would be fabulous to enjoy in the hotter summer weather since it is so much lighter than traditional chili, layered with subtle interesting flavors because of the oyster sauce addition. Michael makes it easy to enjoy chili even in the summer months!

The Texas chili recipe, Bayou City Chili, is perfect for a hearty cold winter dish, the ultimate comfort food during this crazy severe snow weather engulfing the nation this season.

The Texas chili, Bayou City Chili, took the top prize from judges Food Network host Sunny Anderson and Travel Channel author Adam Richman.

To be sure, I will be making all three recipes as they are all outstanding. Kudos to all the people who entered this contest. Now I want to know "But who were the runners up?" Bet those are some serious taste treats too. Hey, Today Show, quit holding out on us here in food virtual land! ")

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Hog Call Chili

For the Hog Call Chili, winner Kyle Barton says the secret to his good taste are the key ingredients of Granny Smith apples and Vermont maple syrup.

From: Kyle Barton, Des Moines, Iowa


2 Granny Smith apples, peeled
4 tablespoons Vermont maple syrup
3 pounds 93-percent lean ground beef
8 ounces of Graziano's sausage
1 tablespoon bacon grease
3/4 cup chicken broth
2 14.5-ounce cans of Del Monte's Petite Cut Diced Tomatoes with Zesty Jalapenos
2 15-ounce cans of Hunts Tomato Sauce
15.4-ounce can of Campbell's Creamy Tomato Soup
1 tablespoon of Superior Touch's Better Than Bouillon chili base
11 ounces of V8 Juice Hot 'n Spicy
7.75 ounces of El Pato Mexican Salsa
2 16-ounce cans of Bush's Chili Beans - Medium Sauce
2 16-ounce cans of Bush's Dark Red Kidney Beans
4.5 ounces of green chilies, chopped
3 tablespoons of salted butter
2 onions
2 green peppers
2 jalapenos
6 cloves garlic
1/2 cup and 1 tablespoon of Olde Westport Chili Powder
1 tablespoon of ancho chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon celery salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1 package of Sazon Goya seasoning


Grease entire chili pot with bacon grease and turn heat on.

Put diced tomatoes, sauce, soup, chili base, salsa, V8 juice, beans, chilies, and chili powder in the chili pot.

In a separate pan, cook ground beef with chicken broth until brown. Add the sausage and cook for five more minutes. Then place into the chili pot with the tomato mixture

Start the timer, counting upward.

Next, cut the onions, green peppers and jalapenos into fine pieces and cook in sauce pan with butter. Then place into the chili mixture.

Take the peeled apples and cut into fine pieces. Mince the garlic and then add both the apples and garlic into the chili mixture.

Next, take all spices except the Sazon Goya seasoning package and 1 tablespoon of chili powder and mix into chili mixture. Cook on low boil until timer says 90 minutes.

Finally, add the Sazon Goya seasoning, the remaining chili powder and maple syrup into the pot. Cook for another 30 minutes and stir frequently. Serve.

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Bayou City Chili

This is traditional Texas chili and they don't include beans in their chili. Rhonda likes to use a shoulder meat that is well marbled, the fat carrying the flavor of all the spices. She also likes to include not just any bottle of beer but Budweiser Lite Wheat which has a citrus flavor in it along with coriander to enhance all the spice in the chili.

From: Rhonda Morrison, Richmond, Texas


3 to 4 pounds Texas Angus boneless rib roast, trimmed and cut into bite-sized cubes
2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
1/3 cup chili powder
2 medium yellow onions, diced
1 teaspoon cumin
5 medium jalapenos, seeded and diced
1.5 teaspoons cayenne
1/3 cup cornstarch, separated
1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 beef bouillon cubes
1 tablespoon black pepper
2 cups beer, preferably Bud Light Golden Wheat
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
3 to 4 cups hot water
28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
2 large poblano peppers, seeded and diced


Coat your Texas beef in 2 tablespoons cornstarch, salt, black pepper and garlic powder and toss well.

Brown your seasoned Texas beef in the shortening on high heat in a big ol' pot.

Lower the heat to medium high and add onions and jalapenos, stirring until onions are clear. Add 1.5 cups of the beer, bouillon cubes, chili powder, cumin, cayenne and oregano. Stir all that up and add water until your meat is covered.

Bring to a boil, lower heat to a simmer and put a lid on it for 90 minutes.

Stir occasionally.

Add poblano peppers, stir and put the lid back on top. Simmer for 15 minutes more to get that chunky, smoky, south-of the-border goodness!

Make a slurry by whisking together the remaining 0.5 cup beer and 4 tablespoons cornstarch.

Add the crushed tomatoes and the slurry mixture to the pot. Stir again and simmer for 30 minutes.

Serve with sweet cornbread or over rice, the Cajun way. Top with fresh shredded sharp cheddar cheese, fresh sliced jalapenos, chopped cilantro, sour cream and/or salsa. Or you can eat this Bayou City Chili bare!

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Its About LOVE Women's Fitted T-Shirt (dark)

Michael's Chili

This is a heart healthy chili recipe made with chicken and turkey. He uses cilantro, oyster sauce, barbecue sauce and Worcestershire sauce - which is a great digestive.

From: Michael Creswell, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


2 pounds ground meat, beef, turkey or chicken
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium bell pepper, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 16-ounce can diced tomatoes
1 26-ounce jar tomato sauce
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
2 16-ounce cans kidney beans
1/4 cup chili powder
1/4 cup ketchup
4 teaspoons onion powder
1/4 cup barbecue sauce
4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
4 teaspoons oyster sauce
5 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
1/4 cup cilantro
2 teaspoons sugar
Black pepper to taste
2 teaspoons hot pepper flakes
4 teaspoons garlic powder
3 bay leaves
1 cup fresh or frozen corn (optional)


First put 4 tablespoons of olive or vegetable oil in a stewing pot.

Place chopped onions and bell peppers in a pot and cook until the onions are translucent.

With a frying pan, put about 1 tablespoon of oil in frying pan, add the meat and cook until the meat is done. Season the meat while it is cooking with garlic, onion powder and black pepper.

Next, drain off any undesired liquid from the frying pan. Add the cooked meat and diced tomatoes to the pot with the onions and bell peppers and let simmer for five minutes.

Add the jar of tomato sauce and the can of tomato paste to the pot. Stir for two minutes.

Add the kidney beans and continue to stir. Add minced garlic, bay leaves, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder (to your desired taste), cilantro, ketchup, barbecue sauce, red pepper flakes, oyster sauce, Worcestershire sauce and black pepper (to your desired taste).

Finally, add the 2 teaspoons of sugar. Stir for one minute. Then let simmer for 20 minutes. Then the chili is DONE!

One optional note: If you would like corn in your chili, it should be added to the pot when you add the kidney beans.

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