Thursday, September 19, 2013

Beef and Bean Chili for Our Chilly Weather

Mid September, and we've already had two nights' temperature dip below frost level.  Brrr.

I must be acclimating to my northern climate, though (former Florida-girl, remember), because I head out and walk the dogs in the morning with just a hoodie while it's 35 degrees.  Yeah, I shiver a little, but not as much as you might think!

Also, our leaves are swiftly turning.  I'll bet in 2 weeks, we'll be full on FOLIAGE!  {sigh} I love Autumn.  Here are some of the reasons why:

  • it's sweater weather (and that's like getting a warm, fuzzy hug)
  • it's soup season (I love it!)
  • it's gorgeous (the autumn colors against the crystal-blue backdrop of the sky is stunning)
  • it's football season (that's an odd one since I'm not much of a fan, yet the din of the cheers and announcers from the TV... while I'm doing something else... is comforting in an old-slipper kind of way. A really old-slipper; I've accumulated fifty years of football seasons)
  • it's crafting season (I definitely feel more creative this time of year)
  • it's when pumpkin-spiced treats are abundant (and appropriate)
  • it's wistful (there's something magical about falling leaves in tones of yellow, amber, orange and red swirling around you and crunching under your feet)

This was at the bend of my road as I headed to work yesterday morning.

Oddly, I don't mind the blur, which wasn't a focusing malfunction but, rather, simply my window still being damp from the morning's frosty glisten (I snapped this through the windshield).

Then, also on my road as I returned from work, there was this.  I love to spot them grazing in the fields and on the hills.  They are so beautiful and graceful.

They remind me of how my dogs play and scamper together.

I'm conflicted about stopping to watch them.  On one hand I want to make a ruckus so that they have a healthy fear of humans and their deadly vehicles.  But on the other hand I want to stay stone-still and quiet so I can observe them for more than a fleeting moment before they dash off into the woods.

At home on that cool evening, chili was on the dinner menu.

Beef and Bean Chili

1 Tbsp tallow
1 clove minced garlic
1+ pound ground beef
2/3 cup beef bone broth
3 Tbsp taco seasoning (recipe for homemade blend coming soon)
1 Tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp chili powder
pinch cayenne, to taste
pinch sea salt
2 cups pureed tomatoes
2 cups cooked red kidney beans
sour cream and grated cheddar for topping
serve with corn bread or crackers

1.  In a large skillet (I used my deep cast iron), heat the tallow over medium heat and sauté the onions until soft then add garlic and stir until aromatic (about a minute).

2.  Brown the ground meat in the skillet, drain.

3.  Add the taco seasoning, oregano, chili powders, cayenne, and salt, stirring well to blend it through the meat. Stir in the beef bone broth and cook over low heat for 15 minutes.

4.  Add the tomatoes and beans and cook for 15 minutes more, stirring occasionally.  Serve with toppings and bread or crackers.

Pretty yummy and not too spicy.  You can kick up the heat, if you like, by increasing the amount of cayenne you use.  We prefer it mild.

That was my recent almost-Autumn day... how are your almost-Autumn days shaping up?  Do you love the fall season? What about it strikes your fancy?

Linking with Tasty Traditions, Homeacre Hop, Tasty Tuesday


Mom said...

Another great blog!! Our deer here in florida are more caramel colored, but still so sweet looking and graceful. You were able to get some really great shots of them.

I love chili, but not in temps ranging in the high 80's...we're still eating shrimp and salads!

Oak Hill Homestead said...

Yum! This sounds delicious! I love fall for the same reasons you do. Those are lovely photos of the deer.

Thank you for sharing at the HomeAcre Hop; I hope you'll join us again this Thursday!