In this article we will explore 5 more simple tips to making great chili at home! These are all very basic and yet at times overlooked. The little extra attention to detail will greatly enhance the experience of the meal and your family and guests will love your for it! So here we go!
It is always better to use fresh veggies over frozen. Fresh anything in the kitchen is a universal law! Try to stay away from veggies that are starting to brown in the refrigerator. I know it is easier to take a shortcut and use frozen veggies, but if you take the time and use fresh ingredients you will be much happier with the results! Hey!, if you live in a part of the country where you are near a farmers market then you have it made in the shade! If you can get fresh chilies in many varieties then get them and you will make a wonderful impression! Remember! Quality over quantity! Make an impression to your guests and they will love you for it!
It is my humble suggestion that if you can cook your chili a day in advance to allow the flavors to “marry” then do it! You will see that the flavors that you get will greatly satisfy you and your guests. Of course if you do not have the luxury to do it this way and you are rushed for time then you can start your chili early in the morning and let it simmer for the major part of the day checking it from time to time with the cooks secret weapon, the spoon! This will allow you to add more of this or that to get your chili just right so that when your guests arrive they will have a satisfying meal. That is what it is all about folks, making people happy with your creations!
Quality over quantity I go back to it again and again. Use your own spices and herbs and do not settle for those prepackaged envelopes of chili mix as they usually have lots of sodium and sodium is something that you want to have control over as you are the chef! Hey!, check this out: Get some zip lock bags and make yourself a bunch of premade spice bags for your chili cooking or any other type of recipe and store them in the freezer. They will stay for a very long time and save you time in the long run. Keeping your herbs and spices in the freezer for a year is better than letting them dry out and lose the flavorful oils in them to the dryness of a kitchen cabinet in the course of a year!
When it comes to using herbs and spices do not use “old” inventory. If you have had spices exposed to the air because of improper storing or packaging then get rid of those and go buy some new stuff. This will greatly enhance the flavor of your chili as those precious flavorful oils of the new herbs and spices will change the whole presentation of this or any dish! This applies if your are using dried herbs and spices. Of course if you can get your hands on the fresh stuff then your chili recipe is sure to be a big flavorful success! I promise! Fresh is best! Take the extra effort to find fresh herbs and spices and you will have the best chili that you have ever had in your life!
The best part of the cooking experience whether you are making chili or anything else for that matter is to have fun! Turn up the stereo and rock out while you are working. The kitchen is not a funeral home and it definetly should not be considered a drudgery, it is made for being creative and having fun. Get the kids involved with you and teach them some kitchen basics! Heck! Get the hubby in there too and teach him a few kitchen tricks so that oneday you can say to him, “hey honey! why dont you make some chili for the weekend?” Get some friends over for a chili making party! Let everyone make a suggestion and then when the meal is done it is pig out time! Cooking with friends and family is a great social medium. Cooking has the power to bring people together and share. I am a firm believer in this!