What seems like a life time ago, my mother and step father owned a small tavern in the small town of Chester, Connecticut. Some of my readers may recall me mentioning that a time or two here at Cooking On A Budget. The tavern was then called The Pattaconk Inn and now is re-named to The Pattaconk 1850 Bar and Grille. My mother's role in the business was chief cook and bottle washer as well as record keeper. Local folks came to love my mother's hot daily specials and certainly loved it when she made her chili recipe.
There are not a lot of the patrons of those days left, but those that are still with us will talk about the really delicious home style cooked dinners my mother served from the small kitchen of "The Conk" and about the fabulous grinders they served. I think we have done well to honor my mom's recipe and I hope you all will enjoy this recipe: Mom's Pattaconk Chili.
- 2 lbs. ground chuck beef
- 2 - 19 oz. cans red kidney beans (one drained, one not drained)
- 2 - 28 oz. cans petite diced tomatoes
- 1 - 6 oz. can tomato paste
- 32 oz. tomato sauce
- 1 can green chilies - diced
- 1 large green bell pepper (the biggest you can find) - medium dice
- 1 large sweet onion - medium dice
- 2 cloves garlic - minced
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 1 tsp. granulated garlic
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 1 tbsp. chili powder
- 1 good pinch cayenne pepper
- In a large stock pot over medium high heat add in the ground beef. Break it apart, turn and cook until browned.
- To the ground beef add in the garlic, bell pepper and onion and spices. Cook on medium low for 3-5 minutes.
- Next add in the diced tomatoes, kidney beans, tomato sauce and green chilies. Stir and cook over medium low heat until it starts to bubble, stirring occasionally.
- When the mixture is hot work in the tomato paste, stirring. Let this cook on low heat for 30 minutes, stir occasionally. Taste and check for reasoning of any of the spices.
- Cook for another 30 minutes. Turn the heat off and let it rest with a cover on the pot. Re-check the seasoning and see if you need to make any adjustments, then serve.
Cook time: 90 minutes
Cost: approximately $16.95, feeding 10 for $1.69 each, 12 for $1.41 each
- You can always add spices, but you can never remove them. So start with the basic spices in the recipe, then re-season according to your taste buds.
- Chili, like a stew, soup or spaghetti sauce always intensifies in flavor as it is allowed to sit for a day. So I do recommend making this ahead (say on a weekend), allow it to cool and refrigerate and when warming it up taste and adjust the flavor to your palette.
- I also recommend ground chuck because fat equals flavor, but you can use any ground beef you prefer.
- The heat that you may want is a tingle in the back of your throat that develops slowly versus a in your face this stuff is HOT kind of heat. Be sparing at first with the cayenne - you can always add.
- Find your canned ingredients at your store's 10 for $10.00 sales and you will find that this isn't super expensive because it makes a lot.
- Chili can be frozen. I would suggest to try and use it in 3-4 months.