Archive for November, 2007

Basic British Chili Con Carne

sent to me from a friend in the UK

4 medium/small sized onions
2 cloves of garlic
4 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp dried or crushed chili peppers, or to taste
2 tsp ground coriander (optional)
2 tsp ground cumin
5 cardamom pods, bruised (fresh grated ginger root seemed to work)
2 red bell peppers
3 ½ lbs ground beef
4 x 14.5 oz. cans of diced tomatoes
8 tbsp tomato ketchup
8 tbsp tomato puree
1 cup water
2 tbsp cocoa
2 x 15.5 oz cans Red kidney beans


Peel and finely chop the onions, and the garlic.

Heat the oil in a very large pan. (Large enough to take ALL ingredients)

Fry the onion and garlic until they soften. Add the chili, coriander, cumin and crushed cardamom pods. Stir well.

De-seed and dice the peppers, and add to the pan. Break up the minced beef into the pan and keep stirring to separate and brown the meat.

Add the chopped tomatoes, kidney beans, ketchup, puree and water, stirring to make a rich red sauce. When the chili starts to boil, sprinkle the cocoa over it and stir in.

Simmer partially covered for 1hr 30 min. (After this point you can freeze or fridge it until needed.)

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees; pour the chili into a large wide dish, or oven proof pan. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until piping hot. (Remember to remove the cardamom pods before serving) Sprinkle with grated cheese and serve.

(Serving suggestions: rice, baked potatoes, hot dogs, burgers or fries with cheese.)

Coffee Suckers with Cinnamon Sticks

Food Network
Recipe courtesy Gale Gand
Show:      Sweet Dreams
Episode:      Party Favors
Coffee Suckers with Cinnamon Sticks
10 cinnamon sticks
2 cups sugar
1/3 cup corn syrup
3/4 cup water
1 teaspoon coffee extract or 1 teaspoon instant coffee mixed with 1 teaspoon hot water

Line lollipop collar molds with cinnamon sticks and lay on a silpat or greased cookie sheet. Combine all of the ingredients, except the coffee extract, in a clean, dry small saucepan fitted with a candy thermometer and bring to a boil over high heat. Without stirring, cook until the mixture reaches 305 degrees or “hard crack” stage on the candy thermometer. (While the syrup is cooking, occasionally wash down the sides of the pan with a clean brush dipped in water, to prevent crystallization.) Half-fill a large bowl with ice water. When the mixture is done, remove the pot from the heat and dip it into the ice bath for 15 seconds to stop the cooking. Remove the pot from the ice bath and swirl in the coffee extract. To avoid air bubbles in the finished lollipops, stir the mixture gently in both directions, and be careful not to over mix. Pour the syrup into the molds, filling them 2/3 full or just pour the slightly cooled (so it’s a little thickened) syrup in coin shapes at the ends of the cinnamon sticks. Cool at least 20 minutes, until hard. Remove from molds or from silpat. Store in an airtight container.

Beer Cheese Soup

1 hour 30 min prep – 4 servings
1/4 lb butter
8 ounces cheddar cheese or American cheese
3 cups chopped celery
12 ounces beer
3 cups chopped onions
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 stalk grated carrots
1 teaspoon white pepper
8 tablespoons flour
6 cups chicken stock

1. Sauté celery, onions, carrots in butter.
2. Add salt and pepper.
3. Blend in flour.
4. Add chicken stock and cheese.
5. Heat gently until cheese melts.
6. Add beer.
7. Adjust spices to taste.
8. Serve piping hot with croûtons on top, if desired.


1 (#2) can tomatoes
1 onion, sliced
1 bay leaf
2 cloves
1 sprig parsley
1 stalk celery, diced
2 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. flour
Salt and pepper
2 c. milk, scalded

Simmer for twenty minutes tomatoes, onion, bay leaf, cloves, parsley and celery, then press through sieve as much as possible of pulp. Blend butter and flour smoothly in saucepan, add tomato mixture gradually and bring to boiling point, stirring constantly. Season and just before serving combine with scalded milk, beating vigorously for a moment with rotary beater. Serves 4-6.