Ah those Prince Rupert days! We were young and isolated and Vancouver was 1500 miles away. It rained a lot and we partied a lot. I have memories of Bob drinking from a watering can, Geoff driving off with Blair on the roof of his little red car. The women were generally better behaved saved an interesting event involving married persons locking themselves in the bathroom at a party. The interesting part was they were both married to someone else. There was not much pot smoking; the people we partied with were social workers and probation officers. We ate a lot of chili. The bean pot came out around eleven and I remember dancing in my mini skirt to obladi oblada until two in the morning. I was feeling a bit nostalgic so I put some beans to soak last night.


Good chili takes time. If you use dry beans, pre-soak them the night before. Cook them next day and cook them tender. Check more than one bean for tenderness. Brown the meat separately. I use the leanest ground beef so there is little fat that remains. Slow cook the chili. Do not forget the ground cinnamon and the cocoa. After the chili is done let it rest for an hour or so on the stove. 

Well the chili I made last week was pretty good, but Maria’s is better. I made it and I am sticking to it. I had to cut the ingredients in half, because I did not want a large pot of chili. The earlier chili was good, but this one is much better. Thank you Maria, your chili is a keeper. Click HERE for Maria's Big Pot of Chili.

1 cup dried red kidney beans soaked in water overnight and drained 
3 cups cold water 
2+2 Tbsp oil 
1/2 lb extra lean ground beef 
1 med onion, diced 
1 stalk celery, diced 
2 cloves garlic, minced fine 
1 bell pepper, diced  [I used red]
1/2 can [540 ml] chopped tomatoes 
1 Tbsp chili powder 
1 bay leaf 
1 tsp cocoa powder 
1/2 Tbsp ground cumin 
1/2 tsp salt 
1 pinch of red pepper flakes or 1 tsp hot sauce 
1/2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce 
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon 
1/2 can [398 ml] tomato sauce 
2 Tbsp vegetable oil to sauté vegetables 

• Soak the dried kidney beans overnight. 
• Discard the soaking liquid. 
• Place the beans in a pressure cooker and cover with fresh water. 
• Pressure-cook the beans for 8 minutes or cook in a pot for one hour until tender. 
• Drain the beans and save some of the liquid. 
• In a heavy bottomed saucepan or dutch oven, sauté onions, celery, garlic and green pepper in 2 Tbsp oil until onions are clear, about 15 min. 
• Meanwhile place 2 Tbsp oil in a non-stick skillet and brown the meat breaking it up and stirring often. 
• When the meat is no longer pink, drain well, squeezing out the juices. 
• Add the drained meat to the vegetables. 
• Stir in tomatoes, chili powder, bay leaf, cocoa powder, cumin, salt, pepper flakes, Worcestershire sauce and cinnamon. 
• Add the beans and add 2 cups of reserved bean water. 
• Slowly sauté covered for 1 hour and stir it occasionally. 
• Remove the bay leaf when done and adjust salt and hotness level as desired. 
• Let it sit for and hour, reheat and serve. 
• This amount will make 4 servings.

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It began with posting a few recipes on line for my family. "zsuzsa is in the kitchen" has more than 1000 Hungarian and International recipes. What started out as a private project turned into a well visited blog. The number of visitors long passed the two million mark. I organized my recipes into an on-line cookbook. On top of the page click on the cookbook to access the recipes. I am not profiting from my blog, so my visitors will not be harassed with advertising or flashy gadgets. Feel free to cut and paste my recipes for your own use. Publication is permitted as long as it is in your own words and with your own photographs. However, I would ask you for an acknowledgement and link-back to my blog. Happy cooking!