We interrupt your regularly scheduled nonsense blog to bring you…
The Great Chili Cleanse of 2016
Hello and welcome, to chili cleanse.
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Sundays are a special time in our household. The Mrs. and I have an understanding that I will take the baby for the day so she can run errands, catch up on work, and generally have some time to do what she needs to get done. In exchange, I get full reign to watch football and play Madden. All. Day. Long. With the little guy on my lap wearing his little Panthers gear, and I in my horribly outdated Ed Reed Ravens jersey (he’s one of my top three all-time Ravens and the only other Ravens jersey I own has the name of a player on another team…I refuse to retire it), we sit and eat. He gets bottles, but I get whatever I want. As such, I am usually up before the sun prepping something appropriate: pulled pork, chopping veggies to top nachos, chili, you get the idea.
Well, this week I made an error in calculations and made WAY too much chili. Faced with a bottomless crock pot, I decided this week I will engage in a “chili cleanse”. All chili, all the time. The base recipe is vegetarian, jam packed with veggies both fresh and canned, not too spicy, but with enough kick to be interesting. This was by design so that the vegetarian Mrs. could partake if that was how she chose to spend her Sunday-lady-day. On this day, she said she would have “some”. Any man with two brain cells to rub together know this to mean in reality: very little. I was on my own. Fortunately, I also had a copious amount of pulled pork on the side to mix in as desired, and I desire it, always.
What follows is my attempt to eat all the chili.
Day 1 – Bowl 1
After an uninspiring breakfast of generic brand cheerios, my lunch was a moderately sized bowl of chili with a lovely heated from frozen Pillsbury Grand. I prefer these frozen pucks over the tube variety because you can toss one in the toaster oven and have a biscuit whenever, but I digress.
The chili is good, I am excited about setting off on this voyage. I pair it with a Great Lakes Brewing Co. Burning River Pale Ale left behind from a previous football week by a friend (thanks Quentin). The Panthers are winning, which in my mind makes my infant son happy because I choose to believe that is his team. The Ravens are winning, this makes me happy. My opponent in my fantasy league has Aaron Rogers starting and he is playing well, I am going to lose. All in all, I’m coming out ahead in this equation, so spirits remain high.
Day 1 – Bowl 2
The Panthers have lost, so the baby is taking a nap and thinking over his crushing defeat. My fantasy lineup has been decimated and the 4pm games have just started, I have some more beers. Despite all of this, the Ravens have won, and therefore, spirits remain high. I go back to the chili for a snack, this time sprinkling some tortilla chips on the top and pairing it with water, for I must hydrate. No pork this time, its just a snack, almost like a bowl of hot salsa.
The chili is good, and I am pleased. I look forward to later in the evening when I will have a larger portion, likely with cheese and more pork on top.
Day 1 – Bowl 3
For dinner some Giants fans dropped by to lament their day’s loss, and they partook of the chili. All were pleased, and yet the bottomless chili pot remains bottomless. It’s depths unfathomable, I press onward. Added some cheese, some pork, and circled back around to biscuits. Satisfied with the day’s events, the remains are portioned out into plastic containers and put in the fridge for later.
Day 2 – Bowl 1
The breakfast of champions may be a cup of microwaved chili and black coffee at 5:30am, but I doubt it. After a sluggish awakening, I was roused to meet the day by the promise of more chili. It’s still good, but I didn’t heat it up enough, and it wound up being half cold, so it’s not great. No cheese, no chips, no biscuit, just me,the chili and the coffee. As I eat I wonder how much to pack for lunch, and have to admit I’m not super into the idea of more chili right now.
Day 2 – Bowl 2
Lunch bowl is of modest size, and I crushed up a bunch of tortilla chips in an effort to make some sort of Frito pie type concoction. I ate it cold because when I am at work, ice water flows through my veins, and I am a man possessed by the mission. I pair it with a 5 hour energy and some water. There is barely time for sustenance. I am growing tired of chili.
Day 2 – Bowl 3
I returned home to find my wife ate one of my portions. I suspect she grows weary of chili cleanse. I double down. Mega-portion for dinner, with added sausage and cheese. I pair it with a Sam Adams Oktoberfest. My passion for chili returns, burning like the indigestion I am currently suffering.
Day 2 – evening update
The gas is real.
Day 3 – Bowl 1
Hot coffee, hot chili, hot times….no picture, deal with it.
Day 3 – Bowl 2
There is not enough chili left to constitute a meal. It is finished. This is good, as the effects you would expect have reached a pinnacle and become toxic.
Although no chili has been consumed in 24 hours, the after effects are still felt.
- The gas, while hilarious, was not as bad as expected at first, but turned suddenly on day 2 to toxic.
- The recipe for chili is:
1 ½ cups chopped yellow onions
1 ½ cups baby bella mushrooms stemmed and cubed
1 red bell pepper chopped
2 lil yellow squashes, cut the stem ends off and dice ‘em
3 (15 oz.) cans diced tomatoes
2 (15 oz.) cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 oz.) can tomato sauce
1 (15 oz.) can corn kernels, drained
2 (4.5 oz.) cans diced green chiles, drained
1 1/2 cups vegetable stock
2 Tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons oregano leaves
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 ½ teaspoons onion powder
1 ¼ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves – no stems, no seeds, no sticks
¼ cup cornmeal
Mix up everything but the corn meal and cilantro.
Cover and cook on High for 4 hours.
20-30 minutes before the chili finishes cooking, dump in cornmeal and chopped cilantro…then let that shiz sit ALL DAY LONG on “warm”. If your pot has no warm setting, I don’t know what to tell you other than get to eatin.
- The pulled pork is basic slow cooked pork shoulder with eastern Carolina sauce (vinegar, sugar, pepper flakes)
- I sort of wish I had more chili, that went really quick.
- Check out the Triathlon-a-Thon below. It’s a good cause, and if you’ve read this far, probably a good person. Think about donating.
I’ll be back at it next week, when I get back around to the exploding beer story/review.
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