I hope everyone enjoyed a fantastic weekend!
I decided to take a break from unpacking and renovations to cook something delicious for dinner: a delicious pot of chili – but here’s the catch – with ingredients from our gardens. Let the harvest begin.
As you can see from the image above, I used fresh tomatoes (varieties mostly unknown), sweet Hungarian peppers, hot Hungarian peppers, onions, carrots, oregano, basil, and thyme. I also added one can of condensed tomato soup (to thicken the mixture), a can of rinsed black beans, browned ground beef, and about half a tablespoon of chili powder. Salt and pepper and that’s all folks!
Most chili recipes call for canned tomatoes – either chopped or diced – which are easily replaced with fresh tomatoes. You can peel you tomatoes or leave the skins on. I don’t mind the skins when I’ve chopped my tomatoes into small chunks. But you may find it worthwhile to remove these by boiling for no more than a minute and then using an ice bath to cool. I’ve read the skins will slip right off, but I’ve never actually tried it for myself.
I usually toss my tomatoes into a pan and cook them on high for a few minutes to let the juices seep out. Then, I pour the hot tomato mixture into my crock-pot with the remaining ingredients. I’ll cook on low for about 8 hours and call it good when the carrots are cooked and the sauce has thickened. As you may have gathered, I don’t follow strict recipes in the kitchen. I make chili, spaghetti sauce, and stews based on what feels right and what’s in front of me.