everything-but-the-kitchen-sink chili

chili

i don’t know how food bloggers do it!  i couldn’t take a decent picture of chili if my life depended on it!  i think they officially have the hardest job ;)

i’ve been making this chili for years, and its different every time.  i make it in huge batches, usually filling my 2 largest pots.  this time i borrowed a gigantic pot of a friend’s and fit it all in there.

chili

 so remember, this recipe is very loose.  like i said, its different every time i make it but always yummy!  another key to this soup is preparation.  as in, i prepare for months to make this.  every time i have veggies that we won’t be able to finish before they go bad, i chop them up and freeze them until i have time to make my next batch of chili.  my kids will eat pretty much all veggies, so i just chop them up.  but if you have picky kids (or husbands!) you can also grate up the veggies so they aren’t discernible.   we also chop up left over meat (pork or steak) and freeze it for the chili.

also, i prefer to just use canned beans, but you can use dry beans and soak and cook them yourself.  i’ve only done it once and it was definitely cheaper, but it took forever and didn’t taste as good!

ingredients:

2  20 oz. packages of ground turkey (or beef, your choice)

2 packs of italian sausage (sweet or spicy)

variety of veggies – we use broccoli, celery, onions, garlic, peas, corn (canned is fine), tomatoes, mushrooms, bell peppers, green beans, carrots… whatever we can get our hands on!

beans – whatever kind you prefer.  we use cannelini, black, pinto, kidney…  we probably use about 12-15 cans of beans (less if we get the big cans).

diced tomatoes – about 10 cans

tomato sauce – 8 cans

salt

chili powder

i told you it was loose!  so often i will just make this with what i have on hand.    you can use more or less of any of the ingredients and be just fine!

i’ve even added v8 when i needed more liquid in my chili!

chili

 so let’s get started!

i grab all my loot  out of the freezer and defrost it in a sink of warm water.

chili

while thats defrosting i start browning the sausage and turkey.  once thats done i drain the fat off and add it to my giant pot.

chili

get a cute assistant to help you open the million of cans.  i start with the beans, for no reason.

chili

 get another cute assistant to rinse all the beans for you until there are no more bubbles, then add to the giant pot.

chili

 get a hunky assistant to do all your chopping and add all the veggies (raw) to the pot.

keep adding all the canned everything.  once i start adding the liquids i turn on the heat, just on low, to get it all cooking.  remember to stir often so the stuff on the bottom doesn’t get burnt.

chili

get even another assistant to take all sorts of random pictures for you.  this step is really important ;)

chili

i told you we put everything in this and here’s proof:  someone gave us a random squash and we didn’t know how to cook it so we grated it up and froze it.  in it went!

chili

 i think onions add so much flavor so i usually add one or 2, depending on size.  i do chop it up pretty good because that is the one veggie my kids don’t love.  then i saute it until they are translucent.

chili

 get another assistant to peel the garlic (i use almost a whole head), then chop it up teeny tiny.  or buy the pre-chopped stuff.  add to the sauteing onions just before they are finished.  then add it all to the pot and stir.

i also add salt and chili powder to taste.  i also sometimes add a variety of other spices, but these 2 are for sure.  i also like to add some tabasco, but not enough that its too spicy for the kids.

then i let it sit all. day. long.

until dinner time.  then eat!

chili

 we like to add shredded cheese, sour cream, and diced avocado to ours – yummmmm!

see all the veggies in there?!  so good!

chili

 once i serve up the chili for dinner, i turn off the heat to get it to start cooling off.

chili

 when i serve up the chili for dinner for my family, i pay attention to how many ladles full i serve.  that way i know how many scoops it takes to serve my family.  once the chili has cooled a bit i fill up freezer bags with the number of scoops it takes to feed my family.  then i spread out the bags on the counter and let them cool off for a couple hours.  then i can stack them flat in the freezer.

chili

the beauty of this chili, besides it being filled with veggies (and sausage, yum), it made about 8 extra meals for us!  i am really bad about planning meals ahead of time, so if its 5 o’clock and i don’t know what to make, i’ll grab a bag of chili from the freezer, defrost it in some warm water, and reheat it on the stove.   while the chili is defrosting i’ll start a batch of corn bread muffins.  they are usually done by the time the chili is warmed up.  and dinner is on the table within 20-30 minutes!

 

 

what i wore wednesday

if you’re new here, hi!  i’m lindsey, a stay at home mom to 3 kids (9, 7 & 5), wife to 1 (duh), and a handmade shop owner.  i started what i wore wednesday long ago because as a stay at home mom, i had a really hard time finding the motivation to get dressed every day.  jammies were so comfy, and changing into sweats truly seemed like a step up for me.  yikes!  so i decided to give myself a kick in the pants and post my daily outfit pictures on my blog.  i knew i wouldn’t want you all to see me in my jammies too much, so i started putting effort into my clothing choices.  if you are in a similar situation, join me here every week!  you can get tons of inspiration from other real women and maybe one day you’ll be brave enough to link up!

this week i have hardly anything to offer you:  only 2 pictures!  i took the kids to the snow for a long weekend so i was mostly in pj’s and lounge wear, so its not too exciting!

what i wore wednesday at the pleated poppy

 cozy sweatshirt – target

yoga pants – target

slippers – old navy

headband – forever 21

what i wore wednesday at the pleated poppy

 yay!  i’m wearing real clothes again!  i had a very full day of running errands and being a kid taxi, so comfort was #1.

sweater – old navy

shirt – forever 21

pants – target

shoes – nordstrom rack

necklace – groopdealz

do you wanna join me?  yay!  just follow the rules:

1. link to your specific blog post, not your blog’s main page. ex: http://thepleatedpoppy.com/2011/09/what-i-wore-wednesday-fall-inspiration/ not http://thepleatedpoppy.com/blog/.
2. please only link outfit related posts. your craft project may be adorable, or that may be a great giveaway, but this linky is for outfit related posts only – thank you!
3. please please please link back here to me so all this wiww stuff makes sense to your readers. and its just nice to do ;) grab a button from my sidebar (see the code box?).
4. check out as many links as possible! i am constantly inspired by so many outfits each week! and you will definitely find some new blogs that you’ve never stumbled upon before – so fun!