I love to make chili because it is so simple. You can start from scratch and be eating in 30 minutes. The rules for chili are not written in stone and there are so many variations anyone can make it to their taste. The best part is the only special skill needed is the ability not to cut off your fingers.
Tomatoes (or tomato sauce) I use about 4 romas
Onion (as much or as little as you like)
Garlic (as much or as little as you like)
Peppers (as much or as little as you like and as hot or mild as you like) I used jalapeno and green bell
Chili powder (as much or as little as you like, but start with about 2 tbsp)
Paprika (as much or as little as you like)
Cayenne (only if you like it spicy)
Meat of choice (I often use left over meat or no meat at all)
Bean of choice (or no beans at all)
Herbs of choice (my favorites for chili are oregano, thyme, basil and rosemary)
Water (make it as thin or thick as you like)
Cornmeal or masa (if you don’t have that cornstarch or arrowroot will work too) about 2 tsp
As you can see, you can choose whatever ingredients or ingredient amounts you want with chili. I often make it with leftover meat and whatever vegetables I have on hand.
It will go faster if you are using already cooked, left over meat since all you are doing is warming it.
Start by sauteing my vegetables (including all the tomatoes except one).
The when the onions are starting to turn clear I add the meat and continue cooking until meat is almost cooked through. I generally use chicken when I make chili and I chop it into pieces that are about the size of a small grape.
Add your spices.
If you used tomatoes, add the last one now. If you chose to use tomato sauce, add it now.
Once your meat is cooked thoroughly, taste it and add spices as needed.
Add cornmeal or masa to thicken
Eat, and enjoy. I serve it with Whole Wheat Cornbread.