The Secret to Making a Great Chili…


On Saturday night, Tanya and I made Chili Con Carne.  I’ve made it before…blogged about it here…

I love using the slow cooker to make chili.  You simply brown up the meat and then throw everything in the slow cooker and let it go for a few hours.

The only aspect of chili that I have messed up, more than once, is the use of spices.  Even when I follow a recipe, I tend to find my chili quite bland.  The spice is always present but there’s no body…no actual ‘chili’ flavour.  This happened on Saturday night.  After letting everything cook for a couple of hours, we tested the dish and found it to be lacking.

Tanya made a call and was advised that we should try adding more chili powder.  Which we did.  Again. And again. And again.  There was a slight change but not enough.  It was still more of a thick tomatoey soup than a chili.

So I jumped online to see what the internet universe would suggest.  Lo and behold, one common suggestion I came across on a number of sites was vinegar.  Vinegar!  I would never have thought of that as an option.

We had nothing to lose…so I tried adding a tablespoon of white vinegar.  Mixed it, tasted it and noticed a change in flavour.  In the end, I added about 4 tbsp of vinegar (my crock pot holds 5L) and it made a HUGE difference!

So Vinegar…a chili secret.

I wrote the alteration onto my typed recipe as a note for next time and figured I’d also share it here. 🙂

Anyone else have any chili secrets to share?

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About Amanda Pants

A bit odd, a bit eccentric, a bit loud. Kinda goth, kinda alt, kinda geeky. Crochet/cooking/reading/writing/big stompy boots/journals and a Cheshire grin! All recorded on Wordpress ;) Learning to cook with a Dash of Daring and a Pinch of Panic: ediblenoir.wordpress.com Sewing and fibre arts, creations made by moi: stitchnoir.wordpress.com Random rants and other bits and pieces: adashofnoir.wordpress.com View all posts by Amanda Pants

2 responses to “The Secret to Making a Great Chili…

  • Amanda

    I toss in a bottle of beer in my chili. Usually a brown or red — not a pilsner or stout. Something firmly in the middle.

    I totally agree with the vinegar though. Brown sugar and/or cocoa powder can add depth to chili too. 🙂

    • Amanda Pants

      I apologize that I overlooked your comment! Ended up in my spam filter for some reason and I just came across it now. Thanks for the suggestions…will definitely be trying that with my next batch of chili. Cheers!

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