Chili (Cheater)

Ingredients:
2 Tbl canola oil
1 med onion- chopped
4 cloves garlic- minced
1 jalepeno- chopped
2 peppers- red/green or both
1 1/2 lb ground beef (or turkey - I typically use turkey)
1 link kielbasa (optional)
1 Tbl each cumin and chili powder
2 tsp each oregano and thyme
2 cinnamon sticks
3 bay leaves
Salt & Pepper to taste
1 dark beer
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
1 15 oz can light kidney beans
1 15 oz can dark kidney beans

Directions:
Heat oil, add onion, cook appx 5 minutes. Add peppers and garlic, cook until soft (not browned). Add beef and cook through - increase heat to high. Add cumin, chili, oregano, thyme, bay leaves and cinnamon. Add beer and deglaze. Add tomatoes and beans with most of the liquid. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 30-60+ minutes.

*Remove cinnamon sticks after about 30 minutes

Recipe courtesy of ... Another one that I have had kicking around and have worked to perfect.

So, I have this problem. The problem that I have, is that every, single time that I make chili, I change what I do. No, seriously. The above was what I initially started with. And believe me, it's good. But since then, I have added so many different options. 2 of the most important ingredients that I have since added are: liquid smoke and smoked paprika. They deepen the flavor completely - and I personally like the smokey flavor.  So the above recipe + those two things, is how I always make it.

However...

When I sent tt to the store yesterday, I was not prepared with the list. I was missing half of what I needed. And by missing half of what I needed, I mean I didn't have: kielbasa, jalepeno, cinnamon sticks, or diced tomatoes. So I had to improvize.

I added red pepper flakes and  [generous amounts of] Franks for heat. I had a small can of tomato paste and 2 28 oz can of stewed tomatoes. I minorly freaked out about the flavor (not sure why, because I really wasn't missing that much) so I threw in a beef stock tub (Knorr Homestyle Stock) and Worcestershire sauce and a little extra of the liquid smoke.

So it definitely has a kick [I am always heavy handed when it comes to the hot sauce]; but I have to say, it's pretty gosh darn good. I always find that the cinnamon is the secret ingredient, but now I am not so sure. Either way, this is a quick and easy chili recipe that doesn't need to cook all day.

Enjoy my lovelies!

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