Across the world, the term chili is used in common parlance for a simple spicy recipe consisting of meat, chili peppers, and tomatoes. A chili recipe can often be a source of controversy with many aficionado's arguing over the use of beans within the dish and the addition of various spices and herbs adding to the many different forms of chili available around the world. In the U.K., the recipe is known as chili con carne and is often served with rice.
Chili's Amazing Origins
A commonly held misconception is the most popular chili recipe being a combination of Texan cuisine and the Mexican culture, a claim the majority of Mexicans do not agree with as they do not wish to be known as the birthplace of the dish.
One of the most amazing stories springing up about the origins of chili dates back to the early part of the 17th-century when Sister Mary of Agreda was in the throes of a series of visions and out-of-body experiences regarding the 'New World' of the U.S. Although the Spanish Nun was never known to have left her convent she is said to have been transported in a series of out of body experiences to America where she preached the gospels to Native American communities. Despite the fantastical claims about the movement of Sister Mary across the Atlantic Ocean she is reported to have written down the first known record of chili con carne after one such visit to America.
Chili Made Its Name in Texas and The West
The rise of Chili as a popular dish sold by street vendors really began in the 1880s when the City of San Antonio, Texas began establishing chili stands selling bowls for 10 cents, served with a glass of water and bread; these stalls proved so popular in a short period of time a San Antonio Chili Stand was permitted entry to the 1893 Chicago World's Fair.
The ease with which chili could be made and sold for a low price quickly saw stands and stores selling this Texan version of chili spring up across the U.S. and prove a great success during the dark days of The Great Depression.
Recipes for Chili
- Chili con carne The traditional form of Tex-Mex cuisine is created with a base of tomatoes, ground beef, and beans; there is some controversy over the use of beans in a chili as many individuals do not feel they are a traditional part of a chili recipe.
- Vegetarian chili As with most recipes, a vegetarian version has been created to allow those who choose not to eat meat to enjoy this recipe. Other varieties of chili include ground turkey, pork, and chicken.
- Chili verde An attempt by Mexican chefs to reclaim the chili in a positive way sees the use of slow cooked pork combined with chili peppers, chicken broth, and tomatillos.
- White chili The traditional red meat used in chili recipes is removed and replaced with poultry and white beans to give this sauce a white color and smoother texture than traditional sauces.
Top 5 Routes for "Chili"
- Marthastewart.com A crafting and recipe site, a number of different options for cooks to try are included along with reviews detailing the ease and success of each dish.
- NYtimes.com The New York Times includes a number of different recipes, including those using turkey and other protein sources.
- Bushbeans.com A whole host of recipes and tips are available using canned beans as the main ingredient to create a full and exciting meal.
- Allrecipes.com User submitted recipes make this a recipe site with a large number of chili options divided into beef, turkey, and vegetarian sections to allow easy navigation.
- Budgetbytes.com This recipe site is designed to help users create exciting meals from the common ingredients found in almost every pantry and refrigerator. Among the reasons for using this site are the tips for substituting different ingredients.
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