Wednesday, December 29, 2010

That's my chili

Brrrr it's cold outside.  Let's warm up with a big ol' pot of chili.  I've been trying to find a chili recipe for years that me and my family likes (except my mom, she doesn't like anything but meat in her chili).  Okay, I finally developed one myself.  Boy does it have everything in it and it sure is yummy!

yep...that's corn

That’s My Chili

Red bell pepper - chopped
Sweet onion - chopped
Chili meat
Can each: Light and Dark Red Kidney beans – drained and rinsed
Can corn – drained and rinsed
Cans diced tomatoes (one can being fire roasted)
Package chili seasoning
Can beef broth
Can water
½ Tbsp
1 Tsp
Each: chili powder, onion flakes, garlic powder, and red pepper flakes
½ Tsp
Each: oregano and thyme

Olive oil

1.  Brown meat in large Dutch oven, drain fat and remove meat from pot
2.  Add 2 tbsp of olive oil to pot and sweat onion and bell pepper until translucent.
3.  Add remaining ingredients to pot. Bring to boil, reduce to simmer.  Cover, simmer for 10 minutes.  Reduce heat medium-low to low and cook for 3-4 hours.  You don't want it to be boiling during cook time but just below simmer.

You're probably wondering about the corn.  I like corn and I like corn in chili.  I think it give little hits of sweet that is refreshing against the spice from the rest of the chili.  Remember, it's always better the next day.  I've made enough here that I'll be freezing at least 2 servings worth for those cold nights when I don't have time to cook chili but want some. 

EDIT: my recipes are always changing to my taste.  I made it again yesterday and added 1 can of tomato sauce and another package of chili seasoning mix.  I also didn't used the addition spices, just the 2 packages of mix. 

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

walk before you crawl

Turn back now if you think this is about Nuggy.  It's not.  It's about me.  Be forewarned. 

Bottles.  Labels.  Carboys.  Tastings.  Corks.  See how I walk before I crawl.  The first jug of mead hasn’t even finished its primary fermentation and I already have dreams of a brand of mead that I can take to tastings and competitions and even sell.  Oh and then I’ll start a meadery…see how I get.   I’m already designing a label and thinking of names and slogans.  It’s all laid out in my head.  Why? I’ve wanted to own my own company for a long long time.  I think I’m just predestined to be a small business owner.  My first grand plan was to open a gourmet dog cookie shop.  I know, you don’t have to say anything.  Next was to own a small yarn shop.  Then I did have a small business.  “1,000 Petals” is my yarn/fiber dying company.  This has fallen to the wayside since becoming pregnant and having a baby.  Although I did love the creative process of color combos it was so time consuming to produce such a small inventory.  I’ve also had numerous ideas along the way, too many to name or even remember.  
Now…Mead.  Out of all the different forms of wine I’ve tried mead is my favorite.  Well, this and Ice Wine.  Side note: Mead is a wine made primarily from honey, water, and yeast.  From my initial research I believe that the upstart $$ for this hobby is fairly inexpensive.  As a matter of fact what should be the first 4 bottles cost under $20 to produce.  Can’t beat that.  I’ve already found a local raw honey producer.  Now, a bit of practicality, this will probably never be anything more than a hobby which is perfectly satisfying to me.  I think some bottles of mead made by hand will make nice gifts.   But does it really hurt to dream and plan for something that might happen.  And to be honest, if I really want this to happen I will make it happen.  So here are some of my big business ideas. 

I want this to be fun.  Thus the name: Bad Ass Hive Mead.  Slogan: “My honey can kick your honey’s ass”.  I’m hoping a friend of mine can come up with some art for this idea.  He does some really cool robot type stuff and I think it would be interesting to see what he could do with this idea. 
Aside from the fun design and conceptual stuff, I have some experimenting to do.  Mead, like wine, can be dry or sweet depending on several variances.  One of these variances is the type of yeast.  First experiment will be with 4 different yeast.  I’m also going to experiment with fruits, making the mead a “Melomel”.  Melomel is defined as mead fermented with fruit added to the honey during primary fermentation. 
Now, most people know that I’m pretty impatient.  You didn’t really think I could wait a year before having the first glass of mead.  Thank god for short or quick meads.  These can be ready in a matter of a few weeks.  They are not going to be anything special or spectacular, I know this.  But they will be homemead.  Get it…homemead instead of homemade? 

Sunday, December 12, 2010

need a topic

Oh how the days fly by.  Nuggy is within days of being 8 months old.  8 months.  It's hard to believe.  He has become such a character.  If I didn't know any better I would think he was trying to come up with ways to get in trouble.  You can see it in his eyes. 
see what i mean

Wow, so many things have been going one around here that I'm having a hard time organizing my thoughts.  Let's see, we got our family pics taken. 
Aren't we cute!

Let's see, what else has happened?  Oh...floor in the kitchen is finished.  Yay!  I'm so proud of how much we've (mainly Paul) have done in this house.  I'll have to get pics later. 

Ummm, I think the newest in new is the mead.  If you've known me for any period of time, you know that I always have some sort of new hobby, or better yet new obsession.  Now it's mead, also known as honey wine.  It's a wine made from fermenting honey.  Yummy!  I'm starting with a small scale experiment with 1 gallon of 3 different varieties. 

we have fermentation
I would also like to make some melomel which is honey mead with fruit.  Plans are to make a pomegranate, pear, and raspberry melomel.  Paul also is going to make his beer from a beer kit I got for him a few years ago.  I don't like beer but I'm looking forward to at least tasting it.  My hope is that I'll have lots of mead to go around for gifts next year. 

I'll right I can't think of anything else right now. I really need to post more often so that this doesn't happen again.