Sunday, January 2, 2011

Susanna Has Too Many Cookbooks (an occasional series): Chili Madness

As I mentioned in my 2011 resolutions post before I took a break for the holidays, I have way too many cookbooks, some of which I've never cooked from, others that are kept on hand solely for the sake of a single recipe. So I thought, what the heck, why not try to at least use each cookbook once this year? And I'll make something other than pumpkin bread from the West Point Officers' Wives Cookbook, something other than Pakistani kima from More With Less, and something other than that sweet potato and spinach salad from Food Matters.

And why not blog about my culinary experiments, even on my mostly writing-related blog?

The Cookbook: Chili Madness: Second Edition, by Jane Butel.

What's it like? Assorted chili recipes, mostly from cook-offs.

What recipe? Chocolaty Chili. A pretty standard veg-beef-and-bean chili, with the addition of semi-sweet chocolate.

How was the cooking experience? OK. Not challenging, but too time-consuming for anything but a weekend dish.

Will I make it again? No. I thought it was OK but wasn't blown away. And Mr. Fraser is an Okie with purist ideas about chili, and he didn't finish his bowl.


  1. Do you have the New American Plate Cookbook?

    If the husband will not strenuously object to a veggie chili they have one that includes chocolate and I think it's nummy. Of course, if you don't already have the book please don't take this as a recommendation to run out and get it -- although I think it's a very good one.

  2. I don't have that cookbook. I could keep an eye out for it...but there is that Too Many Cookbooks problem. :-)

    I was really startled to find out what my husband considers chili--it's just beef, beans, chili powder, cumin, and maybe an onion and some beer. Before marrying him I'd thought tomatoes at least were an essential ingredient. We occasionally have philosophical discussions over whether he should consider other forms authentic, given how picky I am over my barbecue. My argument is that I only say food cooked on a grill != barbecue. I prefer Alabama 'cue to South Carolina or Kansas City (especially the latter--I hate that sauce), but I don't say they're not real barbecue.