In my horror novel Maledicus: The Investigative Paranormal Society Book I, one of the main characters is Sam, a retired homicide detective. In his spare time, he fancies himself a good cook of basic foods, and one of his favorites to cook and eat is spicy chili.
I was thinking about what some of my characters like to eat and cook, not necessarily because this information appears in the novel, but because the more I know about the idiosyncrasies of the characters I write, the better I can show them. This idea is similar to actors creating biography sheets for roles they are playing.
So, what is this recipe?
Sam’s Fiery Bowl of Red Goodness
One pound chuck roast,
One 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes,
One Spanish onion,
One sweet green pepper,
One poblano pepper,
Four habanero peppers,
Two chipotle peppers,
Two jalapeno peppers,
One can dark red kidney beans,
One can black beans,
Ground black pepper,
Twp. cumin seed
(Because this is chili, substitute more or fewer peppers according to taste and heat preference.)
*Cube the chuck roast, then sear completely in a hot, slightly oiled pan,
*Place in Dutch oven (Sam uses a well-seasoned cast iron pot) with crushed tomatoes,
*Slice the onion and green pepper and add to tomatoes,
*use a hand mortar and pestle to crush the cumin seed, and add to Dutch oven,
*add black pepper,
*de-vein and remove seeds from chilies—BE VERY CAREFUL NOT TO TOUCH THESE WITH YOUR HANDS!!!!! If you do, wash your hands thoroughly and do not touch your eyes. Yes, I am speaking from bad experience. Use a small food processor and make the chilies into a mash. Add to the Dutch oven,
*bring to boil, and then reduce immediately to a simmer.
*With about one hour left in the simmering time, drain and add the two cans of beans.
This is very important—do not cover during the simmering. Check the chili every 20 minutes or so, and if needed add a little water, and stir. The chili cooks best if done very slowly and uncovered.
Give it about 10 hours to become fully tender and mixed.
Sam also likes to add cheddar cheese or sour cream to the bowl when serving. Good Italian or French bread also works.
But be warned, with the chilies Sam uses, this should become a hot bowl of goodness. If you want it milder, go to one or two habanero peppers.