BELLI CHILI - a "Lazy Gourmet" recipe


Years ago when I made chili I was married to a fellow who didn't like beans. So I replaced beans with mushrooms, cut in pieces, or a can of mushrooms stems and pieces when times were tough. I revamped the recipe (after divorce) and now it's made with chili beans and Baby Bellas, so I call it "BELLI CHILI" and it's yummy!

half a pound ground meat of any kind - leftover ham, pork, beef, whatever's in the fridge/freezer

half stalk of celery with some leaves

bay leaf

1 teaspoon chili powder

10 or 12 baby portobella mushrooms, cut in quarters

1 can Bush's chili magic

1 can Bush's mild chili beans

1/2 can of tomato paste, a leftover tomato, peeled, or half a medium size can of peeled tomatoes, or all three if you want

2 or 3 garlic cloves, chopped

half an onion, chopped

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

chives and parsley fresh chopped from the garden or teaspoon of each dried

Pour a tablespoon of olive oil into a big pot. (I use an old Presto pressure cooker without the rubber around the lid, super heavy duty aluminum). Brown meat, garlic, onion, celery; add in the rest of the ingredients and add water, rinsing out each can with about half a can of water. Sprinkle teaspoon of chili powder on top, stir in. Add sea salt to taste if desired. Cook 2 hours or so, stirring every now and then to keep it from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

Serve: put 1/4 cup cottage cheese in bottom of soup bowl, heat 30 seconds in microwave, add chili, grate sharp cheddar or add shredded mozzarella on top, return ot microwave and heat about a minute to melt top cheese.

Here's that magic cottage cheese again -- cuts the tomatoey flavor some, also it gets nice and gooey!


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