Here's a recipe from Connie Crow, one of my writing friends. I've had this recipe for awhile--since she calls it a great winter meal. However, chili's great any time of the year. In fact, you should eat hot soups and chili in the summer because the heat will help even out your body temperature. Or so I've been told...
Visit Connie's blog at http://constancecrow.blogspot.com/ and check out her Regency, No Place for a Lady from Awe-Struck Publishing.
Cheesy Crockpot Chili
This great winter meal can be put together in the morning. It will simmer all day and have the house smelling wonderful by the time you eat it that evening.
1.5 lbs ground chuck
½ cup chopped onion
2 tsp garlic
Good pinch of salt.
1 T butter
Melt the butter in a heavy skillet. Throw in the chopped onion and garlic. Sweat the onions and garlic until the onion is translucent. Don't brown now, it turns the garlic bitter. Put in the chuck, breaking it up and browning the meat . Salt lightly. Break it up well. Once it's browned thoroughly, drain off all liquid and fat that cook out of the chuck. You can do this the night before and store it in the fridge until morning.
2 cups crumbled Fritos corn chips
1 cup grated cheese
1 can stewed tomatoes, Mexican style, with liquid
1 can chili beans with liquid
1 tall can tomato juice
1 tsp chili powder
½ tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp salt
2 T. Worcestershire sauce
In the morning, crumble the corn chips into the bottom of the crock pot. Add the meat mixture from the night before. Cut up the tomatoes in the can, if they're whole. Pour can into the crock pot. Add in the beans and their liquid. Sprinkle in chili powder, cayenne, cumin, salt and Worcestershire sauce.
Add enough tomato juice to bring level of liquid to within one inch of crock pot top. Stir well to blend spices. Sprinkle the cheese over top and close lid. Set to slow, 8 or ten hours. Check it mid day. Stir once or twice to distribute melting cheese and dissolving corn chips.
Chopped green onions
To Serve: Put crumpled corn chips in the bottom of the bowl. Ladle in steaming chili. Sprinkle the top with shredded cheese and chopped green onion. Enjoy.
This is a mild chili because I don't like a lot of spice. You can add or subtract to suit. My hubby always hits his bowl with a couple of shots of hot sauce. IF your whole family likes that, you can add it in the cooking time.
This should fit in a 12 cup crockpot. Mine is 45 years old (a wedding present). The recipe doubles nicely to fill one of the newer oval crockpots. It also freezes well.