Yummy, Low-Fat Chili

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The snow storm that left most of the mid-west off the roads had me trapped inside my apartment. Which was good news for my roommate and I, because that meant all I could really do was cook. So I did.

There is nothing more comforting than a hot bowl of chili on a cold and snowy day. For those of you who are concerned, this is a lighter chili, but packs a TON of flavor (even before I drown it in buffalo sauce). Minimal ingredients, low-fat, and delicious…so why not?

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I used ground round which was 85% lean and 15% fat. If you really wanted to make this even lower in fat, use ground sirloin or ground turkey, it would be just as delicious. It’s also bulked up with extra beans and tomatos. Briefly cooking the cocoa, chili powder, and tomato paste before adding the beef really helps intensify the flavors, so make sure you prepare your chili exactly as directed.

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To avoid messing up, I always have everything “mise en placed”, or everything in place.

1 tbsp veg oil

1 medium onion, chopped

4 cloves of garlic, chopped (I used 4 teaspoons of minced, jarred garlic)

2 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

2 tbsp tomato paste

2 tbsp chili powder

2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

1 lb ground round, or sirloin, or turkey

2 cans (14.5 oz each) diced tomatos in juice

2 cans (15.5 oz each) pinto beans, drained and rinsed

Any ingredients that you love to put on your chili ie sour cream, cheddar cheese, scallions, BUFFALO SAUCE!

In a large saucepan (I used the same pot i use to boil pasta, it was perfect) heat the veggie oil over medium-high heat. Saute onions, garlic, salt & pepper until soft, stirring frequently for about 3-5 minutes.

Add chili powder, cocoa powder, and tomato paste. Cook. Stirring frequently until the mixture becomes fragrant. If it looks like everything is burning to the bottom of the pan, dont freak out, your doing just fine. Do this for about a minute, then add your beef to the pot. Breaking it down with a wooden spoon until the meat is no longer pink, about 8-10 minutes. The fat from the beef will help you scrape the bits of the chili powder mixture off of the pan.

Add tomatoes (with their juice) and beans. Crank the heat up high and let it reach a boil, then turn it down and let it simmer until chili is thickened, about 10-15 minutes.

That’s it. It’s that easy, with that minimal of ingredients, and it’s so good. No left overs in my house. I topped my with franks buffalo sauce. I tend to keep things simple.

Now get to cookin’!!!

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Holy Snow Storm, Batman.

Giant, sticky, yucky flakes of snow have been falling to the ground here in St. Louis for about an hour now. It’s coming down hard, and there’s no sign of stopping anytime soon. Schools are closed and half of the staff at my work stayed home with their kids. Sadly, my big girl job is showing no signs of closing early. I’d love nothing more than to be at home making my chicken pot pie, but instead I’m stuck at this desk watching the snow and sleet pile up on the salt covered roads, and completley dreading the drive home. If you gathered from this little rant that I don’t like the snow, you are correct!

On another note, my blog has been up for almost three days now, and I’m suprised at all the views and likes I’ve gotten! So far I’m having a lot of fun with all of this, and I’m having a hard time not showing it off and spreading the word. I wanted to start my own food blog a long time ago, so the people who have recently pushed me to do this, a big thanks to you. I am blessed to have people like you in my life, and you know I will ALWAYS have something baked fresh and delicious for you!

Jon’s Favorite Cookies

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The very first batch of goodies I made in school. My very first practical at Le Cordon Bleu was to make a batch of these. Apparently the manufacture that distributed our tools (yes, in the culinary world our measuring spoons, spatulas, knives, ect. are tools) the measuring spoons were all about two sizes larger than they were supposed to be. The cookies tasted like baking soda-or at least thats what my classmates thought, I ate them, I thought they were good. Anyway, These are the best chocolate chip cookies I’ve ever eaten. Perfect crunchy texture on the outside, and warm, soft, chewy, chocolaty goodness on the inside. I’d also like to note the thickness of the cookie, if your anything like me, you avoid thin, crunchy chocolate chip cookies whenever you can. These bad boys, right out of the oven, with a big glass of milk, keeps my man happy and my thighs begging for mercy (let’s be honest here, they aren’t the most figure friendly, but I can usually get away with one or two).

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I’d like to point out now that some recipes I have are measured by weight, and some are not.

5oz unsalted room temperature butter

4oz granulated sugar

4oz brown sugar

3/4 tsp table salt

3oz eggs

1tsp vanilla extract

10oz AP (all-purpose) flour, pastry flour works great too

3/4 tsp baking soda

10 oz semi sweet chocolate chunks, or chips if you prefer

Start off by preheating your oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare a baking sheet by spraying the the surface lightly with non stick cooking spray. Line the sheet with a piece of parchment paper, the cooking spray should act like glue, then go ahead and spray the top of the parchment as well.

Using your stand mixer’s paddle attachment, cream your butter and sugars, this is called the creaming method. In order to do this, the butter MUST be room temp! If you don’t have a fancy-shmansy stand mixer, a hand held one will work just perfectly. Mix at medium/high speed until all the sugars and butter have evenly incorporated and the mixture is a very pale brown. You might even want to press down on the mixture with a spatula to make sure there are no chunks of sugars (no one wants to bite into that). Sifting the sugars into the bowl before mixing will guarantee no clumps. Isn’t that nice?

Add eggs in two additions making sure the mixture is fully incorporated before adding the other egg. Go a head and throw the vanilla in there too. Again, make sure everything gets incorporated evenly.

Turn your mixer off and add your dry ingredients into the bowl, turn on low speed, unless you like flour all over you and your kitchen. When it’s safe,  go a head and turn your mixer to medium speed. Stop mixing just before all the flour is completely mixed in so you can add your chocolate chips without over-mixing your dough. Go ahead and add your chocolate, a few more churns of the mixer and you should be okay. Please don’t over mix the dough! Consequences include the breaking of teeth and homemade hockey pucks.

Scoop dough size of your liking onto the prepared baking sheet and bake for about 10-12 minutes. I will be honest with y’all, I NEVER use a timer. I tend rely on my nose and the way my product looks to tell me weather or not its done. So just look for a pretty golden brown on top.

If you can handle warm gooey cookies filling your kitchen with sweet and smelly goodness, let them cool for a few minutes.

Enjoy with a glass of milk while they are still warm. They should keep for about week in a ziploc bag or an air-tight container, but thats crazy, you should just go ahead and eat them.

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a big thank you to my friend khyle, for without her I wouldnt have had anyone to help me take this last picture.

Why I’m Doing This

How To Feed A Warrior is a blog fueled by my passion for cooking and love of  my own warrior, whom I cook for (with lots of love) all of the time.

The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, thats the truth. I’ll be sharing pictures, recipes, tips, and tricks that come out of my own (very tiny) kitchen.

I am blessed to have so many friends and so much family who support what I love to do, but I’m even more thankful that they LOVE all the food and goodies I make for them (thats what’s really important, right?)

I DO NOT work in the food industry, but I gotta put my culinary training to use somehow, and what better way than to teach others?!

I encourage all you readers to try these recipes I post. If it’s worth my time, I promise it will be worth yours!

Happy Cooking, y’all!

Cassidy