Thursday, October 22, 2009

Fast, cheap and easy.

No, not me!

Well. Okay. I AM all of those things but for the purposes of THIS post-- not me.

I'm talking about food. I'm talking about hot, filling comfort food. I'm talking about reaching a man through his belly.

And, I'm talking about a lazy slave who found a delicious shortcut and I aim to pass it on to you. :)

Maybe, on a cold and blustery Monday morning you look outside and see something like this:

Maybe you just want to sit on the couch, yank the pillow over your head and pretend you live in Hawaii.

Maybe you don't WANT to have to go butcher the cow, shell the beans, knead the dough, churn the butter and puree the tomatoes.

Maybe you're thinking PB&J for dinner sounds wonderful and then your Man calls and he's working outside and he's tired and cold and hungry and he says "What hot meal are you making for me tonight, slave?" and you have this rush of guilt and figure perhaps it's time to take the pillow off your head.

But you're no more motivated to butcher cows and shell beans.

So what do you do??

You cheat, that's what. You cheat and you enjoy the fuck out of it because, as the title said, it's fast, it's cheap and *bonus!*, it's easy.

It's magic.

Chili magic, that is.

First, slave over that can opener opening all of them cans. It's turrible hard work I tell you.

Dump the can contents into a pan. Preferably you'd empty them into your slow cooker so it has several hours to blend the flavors together, unless you're like me and really took the whole couch/pillow/Hawaii fantasy to late afternoon. Oops.

So, dump the magic and the 'maters together so they've got some time to blend and cook together. In the meantime, dice up your onion if you like them and toss that in with your ground beef.

If you like that raw onion taste, you could dump the onions in with your canned stuff, but I loathe raw onions so I cook them down.

Then drain it and dump that into your canned mess of magical goodness.

Stir it in and let it simmer for a bit. You really need to let the burger chunks soak up some chili-tomatoey sauce, let the tomato chunks soften, let the onions blend in- just let it simmer.

Add spices if you want. Master and I aren't spicey kind of folks (except in the bedroom! Ha!) so I don't add much more than salt and pepper, maybe a dash of chili powder.

If it were already in your slow cooker and you hadn't spent the day having sex on the beach with Anakoni and his well-placed lei... *ahem*


Next, (after you've washed your hands because Anakoni made you do filthy, filthy things to yourself), gather up some toppings. Sour cream, shredded cheese, Fritos(!), oyster crackers- whatever floats your little chili boat- and ladle it all up.

Then, slice up that $0.99 loaf of french bread that you got on the bakery clearance rack and slather it with butter.

Serve that hard-working man.

Do NOT, I repeat, do NOT call him Anakoni. Impressed as he may be with your chili magic, he won't like it. Trust me.

All in all, for a couch potato, blustery fall day- fast, cheap and easy works out well. And, nobody has to know! Toss out those magic cans and everyone thinks you're a chili goddess! I have no freakin' clue how to make chili from scratch but Master takes this to work and, by God, they worship my mad kitchen skillz.

Cheating. It's what's for dinner. ;)

ps. Total cost for me (chili only, not including toppings) was well under $15.00, for enough chili to feed 5, plus Master's lunch the next day, plus enough leftovers to toss in the freezer for chili-topped baked potatoes one day next week. Also, I saved half the ground beef and onions that I'd cooked up and used that in a ground beef stew I made the next night.

pps. I understand the Chili Magic is being (has been?) discontinued. I'm still finding it on my grocery shelves, but not for long, I gather. I consider this one of life's greatest tragedies.

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