During college, I waited tables at a great little restaurant – sort of a 'gourmet pub' –  that served the most delicious chili. Before I left, I got the recipe from the chef, but the quantities could have fed a fraternity.  Over the years, I've tweaked the recipe, often basing the adaptations on what I had on hand when a chili hankering hit.

In preparation for the 49ers game, I'm making a pot.

Black Bean and Chicken Chili

4 chicken boneless, skinless chicken breasts diced to bite sized pieces

1/4 c canola oil

1 1/2 med yellow onions – small dice

4 garlic cloves minced

2 cans of black beans, drained (I use the no salt)

1 1/2 cups canned tomato sauce 

2 T chili powder (there is no spiciness, so don't worry)

1 T cumin

1/2 t cayenne pepper

Salt & Pepper

Serves 4-6

1.  Heat the oil on med high in a dutch oven. Put in the chicken.  Saute until cooked through.  Add a little salt and pepper to season.


2. Take the chicken out of the pot with a slotted spoon and set aside, leaving the oil in the pot.  Lower burner to medium heat. Add the onions. Saute a few minutes, then add the garlic.

3. Saute for 1 minute, then add the chili powder, cumin and cayenne pepper.

4. Add chicken back to the pot, put in drained and rinsed beans and the tomato sauce.

5. Season with salt and pepper. Will vary depending on whether the beans and tomato sauce have salt.  If they don't, you will need to season heavily, but do it gradually as you can always add more salt, but not take it away.

6. Put lid on the dutch oven, turn the heat to low and simmer for about 30-45 mins. Stir frequently to prevent scorching.  Taste often. Add 1/4 c water if it looks dry.

Serve with grated cheddar cheese and sour cream.

While the chili was cooking, my daughter Lily and I did some baking. 

Lily made her world famous chocolate chip cookies (Toll House recipe :).

And I made cornbread and a salad.

There's nothing like spending the day in the kitchen when it's raining outside and everyone is home buzzing around.  

It's a going to be busy week… Wrapping up final details on two big projects before I leave for the East Coast on thurs – Northern VA to visit my grandparents for a couple of days, then up to nyc for the NYIGF.  Anyone else going??? 

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