Tonight we are having a heart healthy homemade chili, brown rice, black beans and beer cornbread.
Heart healthy Chili -
1 lb lean ground beef
2 tlb. unbleached flour,
1/2 onion minced
2 tbl. minced garlic
1 c. fresh tomatoes diced plus water pureed (see below)
Chili powder, cumin, garlic powder
2 c black beans, drained
In a skillet brown the ground beef until it is no longer pink. Drain in a colander and rinse. This eliminates most of the fat. Place the ground beef in a stock pot.
Saute the onion and minced garlic with the cooked ground beef using 1 tablespoon olive oil. When the onions are done add in the unbleached flour and seasoning and coat the mixture. This is the thickening agent. Cook for about 1 minute.
In a blender/ninja/food processor blend the tomatoes plus 1/4 c. water and 1 tsp lemon juice. Once thoroughly blended pour into stock pot and stir. If the mixture is too thick, add a little more water. Sometimes I just grab more fresh tomatoes and puree them instead of adding water. It's a fine line to walk when adding water and loosing the richness of the dish. Occasionally I also chop up a tomato or two to add to the chili.
As the mixture starts to bubble add the black beans. If you are using canned black beans, rinse them before you use them to eliminate the sodium. This also insures you are using a pure product. Again, sometimes if I am using black beans that I have cooked from dry I may add in some of the liquid from the beans to boost the flavor even more.
Let the entire mixture simmer for 10-25 min. If the mixture is too thin you can mash some of the black beans while it is simmering to help thicken it up.
About the seasoning. I use about 1/3 c. chili powder and 2-3 tbl cumin and 2-3 tlb garlic powder. I like the bolder taste.
Beer Cornbread -
2 c self rising flour
2 c cornmeal mix (not just cornmeal but the kind where you add and egg and some water)
1 tlb sugar
a beer and a half.
In a large bowl combine the cornmeal and the flour and sugar. Mix together. Slowly pour in the beer, mixing well while you are pouring it in. The levening in the self rising flour and the cornmeal mix will react to the yeast in the beer and bubble.
Once this is mixed well, pour into a 13x9 pan that has been sprayed with non stick. Drizzle olive oil over the top and back at 375 for 30-40 min.
This is AMAZING cornbread. Once you try it you'll never go back to your old recipe.
Olive Oil Spread
1/4 c butter
1/2 c. olive oil
Blend and place into a non-stick container. Use this instead of butter or margarine. You cannot tell the difference between this and butter or margarine and it is a little healthier.
You can also add herbs to it or spices and sweetener for a different spread.