Chili con Carne

I often keep a pound of spicy Italian sausage from Safeway in the refer for last minute dinners. A spicy bowl of chili topped with cheddar cheese, sour cream, and scallions is only  90 minutes away.


1 lb. spicy Italian sausage
1 oz. EVOO
1/2 oz. garlic, sliced
8 oz. onion, medium dice
4 oz. celery, medium dice
3 oz. carrots, peeled, medium dice

1 T. chipotle chili, ground1 T. ancho chili, ground
1 T. cumin, ground
1/4 t. oregano, ground

16 oz. chopped tomatoes in juice
16 oz. chicken broth

16 oz. cooked kidney beans


Measure all ingredients.


Heat the oil over high heat, then break the sausage into small chunks and arrange over the  surface of the pan. Continue to cook over high heat until the sausage is well browned on all sides, stirring from time to time.


Add the garlic and onions, and cook until nicely wilted.


Add the spices, and stir as they get hot.


Add the carrots and celery, and cook until they begin to soften.


Then add the broth and tomatoes, and bring to a boil.


Reduce to a simmer, and skim the fat from the sausage as it comes to the surface. It is easier if you keep the pot off center with the flame. The boiling on one side will naturally push the fat to one side. Add some salt, and cook for about 45 minutes, or until all of the flavors have come together. Add the cooked beans, correct the seasoning, and serve.


I grow lots of beans for drying in the summer, and kidney beans are on the list. To use them, I soak them overnight in water, then drain and cover with just enough chicken broth to cover. I add a little salt and ground black pepper, and simmer them, covered over very low heat until cooked, about 45 minutes. They have a much nicer flavor than the ones that come in cans.