5 Essentials for the Perfect Pot of Chili

Posted on October 02, 2014 by Georgeanne Yehling | 7 Comments

It's THAT TIME of the week again, y'all--Friday! Chili Fights in the Heights, our favorite chili-centric foodie brawl, returns to our little stretch of the Heights tomorrow, October 4th. We can't wait to taste the amazing takes on this quintessential fall dish.

This week's Friday Five is comprised of 5 Essentials for the Perfect Pot of Chili--amateur chili cooks and the seasoned chili connoisseur will all agree these are must-haves!

1. A good pot

What type of pot should you use? That's up to you, but here are three of our preferred options, each a little different, but after the same goal: a perfect pot of chili.

Enameled cast iron French ovens from Le Creuset are practically heirlooms out of the box. They transfer seamlessly from oven to stove to table and look darn good while they're doing it. We use ours for, well, pretty much everything, including chili!

A stainless, tri-ply stock pot (like this one from All-Clad) allows us to use a low, evenly distributed heat to simmer our chili until it's just right. We aren't worried about hot-spots: it's a jam!

Sometimes, though, we just feel like setting and forgetting.
An electric slow cooker allows us to do just that, and this one from Breville is our favorite. Its non-stick easy sear insert can move from our oven into the slow cooker, and the awesome "dual" heat setting alternates automatically between "low" and "high" heat. No layer of burnt gunk on the bottom of our pot? Sign us up.

2. A good spoon

A pot of chili isn't a pot of chili unless it's been lovingly stirred, stirred, stirred by a chef with a long-handled (preferably wooden) spoon. Our pick is this French spoon, made of responsibly-sourced beechwood:

 

3. Great beans

Spare us! Chili has beans! And great chili has great beans.

When we discovered the difference using heritage, heirloom beans in our secret recipe, we thought about apologizing to anyone who had eaten our chili before. They make them that good.

Try Sangre de Toro beans in your next pot. Thank us later, but you're welcome.

4. The best seasonings

Maybe you make your own chili spice blend. Maybe you don't. If you're not feeling like a kitchen chemist, why not try an Arkansas-made seasoning like Ferneau's Signature blend or Woody's BBQ Rub, both of which will add great (though very different) flavor to your next batch!

5. Someone with whom to share

This may be the most important ingredient of all. Sitting down in community with friends, family, or even strangers blesses both the food and the diners. There's nothing like the conversation, warm bellies, and warm hearts created when we sit together and enjoy some good food.

Well, y'all, that's our Friday 5 for this week! Be at Chili Fights this Saturday or be... well, really sad you didn't eat some of that delicious chili.

What's your favorite way to eat chili? Leave us a comment below & tell us what we've missed!

Posted in events, fall, friday five


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Sarah Shotts
Sarah Shotts

October 07, 2014

I love my enamel cast iron dutch oven. Now we just need a plain ole black one for camping. :)

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