Spicy Chili in a Crock Pot

 

bowl of chili

Ready to gobble down.

Who doesn’t love chili? Oh, I’m sure a few of you exist, but I bet I have a better chance of running into Bigfoot than you. I’d better pack some chili so Mr. Bigfoot doesn’t get angry.

This is a three bean chili only because I like seeing the different beans in it. One bean is boring and we can’t have boring food. It also has brown sugar because I find it helps counteract the acidity of the tomatoes. And, it gives a nice flavor profile. Sweet & heat, that’s what you’ll find here. Plus, with the ease of the crock pot, you just dump in the ingredients, give it a stir and forget it. We’ve got more important things to do, you know. There’s the new edition of Bon Appetit to read. Although, I bet they’ve never featured a crock pot recipe! Now, on with the show.

Fixings for a big ole pot of chili!

ingredients for chili

Chili fixin’s

 

Open, drain and rinse the pinto and black beans. Add to the crock pot. Dump in the cans of kidney beans, too. You can drain them, but I like the added liquid and the thickening that it adds. Pour in all the canned tomatoes with their juices.

beans, tomatoes in crock pot

Add the beans & tomatoes

Dice up the onion and garlic. Dice up the jalapeno, seeds and all. This is a very spicy chili. If you feel the need, you can deseed and devein the jalapenos. We won’t tell anyone. Get your spices out. Retrieve the cold Guinness from the fridge. Leave his 11 companions for later consumption.

diced veggies and spices

Diced veg and spices. Oh and a Guinness beer!

Add the diced veggies and the spiced to the pot.

add the spices and veggies

Add the spices and veggies.

Now, crack open the secret weapon, the Guinness beer and pour that in. Watch that sugar foam.

Pouring in the Guinness

Pour in the Guinness.

Reach over and scratch the head of the kitchen kitty, since it just popped up over the counter.

Kitchen Kitty

Anything for me?

Nothing gets cooked in this kitchen without her approval. Wash hands because cat hair is not an approved condiment. Now, mix the chili makings all up. You’ll notice that I did not add any salt. I think that all the canned veggies add enough salt. Give yours a taste, if you think it needs salt, add it.

Mix the contents

Give it a good stir.

Kitchen kitty will approve. Now, cover up the crock pot and cook the chili at low for 6 hours. Give it a stir about the halfway mark, just to make sure everything is still just fine. When done, serve with plenty of grated cheese, some cilantro and even some more jalapeno slices. Top with some sour cream, if you’re into that sort of thing. Break out the crackers, crack open a cold beer and enjoy!

Bowl of hot chili

Hot chili – Cold beer!

Spicy Chili in a Crock Pot
Author: 
Recipe type: Crock pot vegetarian chili
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
An easy three bean vegetarian chili with a sweet, spicy kick!
Ingredients
  • 2 – 15.5 oz cans of dark red kidney beans
  • 1 – 15.5 oz can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 – 15.5 oz can of pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 – 10 oz can of Rotel tomatoes with green chiles
  • 1 – 10 oz can of Rotel Hot Tomatoes with Habaneros
  • 1 – 14 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • ½ cup of dark brown sugar
  • 2 jalapenos, diced. Remove seeds, if desired.
  • ½ cup diced onions
  • 2 Tablespoons diced garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 Tablespoons of Chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground chipotle powder
  • 1 – 12oz bottle of Guinness beer
Instructions
  1. Get out your crock pot. I used a 6 qt one. Wash and dice your onion, jalapeno and garlic. Deseed and devein the jalapeno to control the heat, if desired.
  2. Open, drain and rinse the black and pinto beans. Dump in the crock pot. Add in the dark red kidney beans.*
  3. Pour in all three cans of tomatoes, with their juices. Add the brown sugar, ground cumin, chipotle powder and chili spices. Add in the jalapenos, onion and garlic. Pour the beer over all. Stir well to combine.
  4. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.
  5. Serve topped with shredded cheese and cilantro. Serve with crackers and hot sauce. Plop on some sour cream, if desired. Don't forget the beer!
  6. * Note: you may drain and rinse the kidney beans if you want. I like the additional liquid and thickness they give to the chili.

 

 

Akoori, an Indian style scrambled egg dish

Akoori or Indian Style Scrambled Eggs

akoori eggs

scrambled goodness

Sometimes scrambled eggs just aren’t enough. You want a little more. A little pizazz. A little umph to get you going in the mornings. Well, hold on! This is just that little something. Something with a little spice to open those sleep filled eyes. Something that doesn’t need eleven pots and pans to make. Something guaranteed to give you a happy tummy.

I have a happy tummy!

This is what you’ll need.

akoori ingredients

Get small farm, cage free, eggs. The chickens will thank you. Support local farms.

Please excuse the tube of ginger. I am lazy and this stuff is great. I don’t use enough fresh ginger to keep a knob around. When I did, it would usually be found in the bottom of the fridge, all covered with white fuzz.

Dice up the onion. This one was very potent and I cried and cried. I got revenge, though. I ate it. Toss the onion in the skillet with the oil.

saute onion

saute the onion

Saute until it gets soft. While that’s cooking, go ahead and get the other ingredients ready.

ready to cook

Colorful!

 

Once the onion is ready, add in the tomatoes, chiles and the spices. Cook for a couple of minutes.

add in the tomatoes

Add in the tomatoes and spices

 

Crack all your eggs in one bowl.

bowl of eggs

all my eggs

Whisk them up and add some salt & pepper.

whisked eggs

Beat it, get yourself a whisk and beat it.

Pour them into the pan with the veggies.

adding the eggs

action shot!

Add in half the cilantro.

add cilantro

add half the cilantro

Cook the eggs, pushing them around in the skillet until they form soft curds.

egg curds

forming egg curds

Keep pushing them around, until they are cooked the way you like it. If you want soft scrambled eggs, stop now. For firmer set eggs, keep on cooking!

Serve garnished with some more cilantro. This is great with a little fresh fruit salad. The recipe for that is – Get fruit, chop fruit, eat fruit. Whew! That was hard, wasn’t it? I used a banana, strawberries, blueberries and a clementine orange.

Akoori plate

Delicious breakfast!

Recipe time!

Akoori, an Indian style scrambled egg dish
Author: 
Recipe type: breakfast, brunch
Cuisine: Indian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
A delicious dish of spicy scrambled eggs.
Ingredients
  • 8 eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • ⅔ cup finely chopped onion
  • ⅔ cup chopped tomato
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 green chilli, finely chopped - Serranos or Jalapenos work great.
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • 3 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped, reserving half to garnish.
  • salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cook the onions until softened, stirring frequently about 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in the tomato, ginger, chilies, cumin and turmeric and cook, stirring for 2 minutes.
  3. Whisk eggs in a medium bowl. Season with salt & pepper.
  4. Stir the beaten eggs into the skillet with the tomatoes and add half the cilantro. Stir well to combine all ingredients.
  5. Cook slowly, stirring frequently, until soft, thick curds form. Cook until eggs reach your desired firmness.
  6. Serve immediately, garnished with remaining cilantro.

 

 

Easy No-Bake Granola Bars

A good to eat, tasty treat!

stacks of granola bars

Yummy granola bars

We all love our families, right? We want the best for them. Want them to have healthy meals and treats. We want something fast and easy to make. Well, I have got that covered. Homemade granola bars! You don’t even have to start the oven to make them. The beauty of these bars is, you probably have all the ingredients on hand. Missing craisins? Use raisins. Don’t have almonds? Use peanuts, walnuts, or sunflower seeds! Want to add something else? Chocolate chips? Do it! Just leave out and equal amounts of the nuts, coconut or fruit. Soon enough, you have a handy, portable snack that will make anyone happy! Plus, you know exactly what’s in them. No mystery chemicals, no artificial anythings. Whole grains, fruits & nuts. Everything that’s good for you and good for them!

The cast & crew for today’s play.

no bake granola bars

Soon to be granola bars.

You’ll need a large, heat safe mixing bowl. Measure out the craisins and give them a rough chop. Dump them in the mixing bowl. Add the shredded coconut, too

dried cranberries and coconut

dried cranberries and coconut

. While you’re chopping, give those whole almonds a rough chop, too.

chopped almonds

chop the almonds

Set them aside, so you can toast them after the oats are done. Find a saucepan and put it on the stove. Cube up the butter and put it in. Dump in the dry sugar and cinnamon. Pour in the agave, molasses and almond extract

sugar and spice

Wet & dry sweeteners, butter, almond extract and cinnamon.

. Heat until boiling, stirring to dissolve sugar.

sugar syrup

The syrup is ready.

Remove from heat and set aside until done toasting other ingredients. If you are super cool and can multi task – you can get this all done at the same time! Get out a large skillet. Heat it over medium heat and dump in the oats.

dry toasting oats

pale untoasted oats

Toast them, stirring every now and again, until they start to brown. About 3 to 5 minutes.

toasty oats

lovely brown toasted oats.

Pour them in the mixing bowl. Carefully, carefully, wipe out the skillet and return it to the stove. Add in both kinds of the almonds

toasting nuts

Add the almonds

and toast them, stirring frequently, until light brown.

toasted nuts

All toasted.

Add the nuts to the mixing bowl. Stir up the dry ingredients until they are really mixed up.

dry granola mix

The dry mix

Pour in the hot sugar mixture and stir until all the pieces are coated.

wet granola mix

Almost done.

Now, get out an 11 x 7 pan and some plastic wrap. I find it helps to swish a little water around the pan and dump it out. The dampness makes the plastic wrap stick better. Tear off a piece of plastic that is twice as long as the pan.

pan

prepare the pan

Center it, so that you have about 6 inches hanging out each end. Smooth the plastic out in the pan. Dump in the granola mixture and spread it out. Fold over one side of the plastic and then the other.

fold sides

Fold the sides over

Press down firmly on the granola mix to compress it.

compress the mix

Smash it down.

Place the pan in the refrigerator for an hour. When it’s firm enough for your tastes, plop it out of the pan and peel off the plastic wrap. Cut it in half lengthwise.

cut in half

Cut in half,  lengthwise

Then, cut that half in quarters.

halve again

Cut those halves in half

Keep on going until you have 16 bars.

into eights

Then into eights

Wrap each bar in plastic wrap or a snack baggie. Then when the need arises – grab one and munch away!

Easy No-Bake Granola Bars

Easy No-Bake Granola Bars

Easy No-Bake Granola Bars
Author: 
Recipe type: snack
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 16
 
An easy no bake granola bar that you can change to meet your needs.
Ingredients
  • 2 ½ cups of rolled oats, not instant
  • ¾ cup whole almonds, rough chop
  • ¾ cup sliced almonds
  • ¾ cup dried cranberries, rough chop
  • ½ cup of shredded coconut
  • 5 Tablespoons of liquid sweetener - like honey or agave
  • 2 Tablespoons of molasses or maple syrup
  • 3 Tablespoons of butter
  • ½ cup of sugar - I used evaporated cane juice.
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
Instructions
  1. Toast the oats in a dry skillet over medium heat. Stir frequently until the oats have a nice brown color, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and empty into a large, heat resistant mixing bowl. Carefully, wipe out the skillet.
  2. Return the pan to the heat and add in the chopped almonds and the sliced almonds. Toast, stirring frequently, until nuts are light brown. Remove from heat and add to the mixing bowl.
  3. To the mixing bowl, add in the rough chopped dried cranberries and the shredded coconut. Mix well.
  4. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add in the liquid sweeter and the molasses or maple syrup. Mix in the sugar, cinnamon and almond extract. Stirring occasionally, bring to a boil and then remove from heat. Pour over oat mixture and stir until the mix is completely coated.
  5. Prepare an 11 x 7 in pan by lining it with plastic wrap. Allow a 7 inch length of wrap to over hang the ends of the pan. You'll use this to press the mixture down. Spoon the mixture into the pan, smoothing it out. Fold one side of the wrap extension over the mix and then repeat with the other side. Press down on the mixture to compact it. Place in the refrigerator to set up. Check for desired firmness after one hour. Is still too soft, check again after another hour.
  6. Once firm, turn out of pan. Remove plastic wrap and cut into 16 bars. Slice into halves lengthwise. Then slice each portion into 8 bars. Wrap each bar with plastic wrap and store at room temperature for soft, chewy bars or in the fridge for crunchy bars.