Entries in My Recipes (3)


My Chili is Serious Business 

There is no exact recipe or measurements in what I call Lester's Real Chili. That's just how I roll when I make chili: I have fun with it, layering the flavors throughout the cooking process. Making my own chili powder is the key that opens the door to big flavors. There are no beans or ground meats in this chili. It takes a while to cook, but it's worth it. I hope this gives you a base of ideas for your next chili pot. Call me or email if you have questions. I'm a Personal Chef – I can make this for your next party, or teach you to make your own, with hands on instruction.
Everyone loves my chili!

I start with an assortment of dried chilies that I pan roast. They will smell like chocolate when they are ready.
I break up the roasted dried chilies, including some of the seeds and put them in an electric grinder to create my chili powder. 


For the meat, I use a chuck roast. I trim it, discarding most of the fat. Notice that the roast I used is well marbled, that's a good thing. I cut the roast into 1/4 inch cubes, leaving much of the marbled fat. I brown the beef in small batches. I like to have my meat as dry as possible when browning. If your pan fills with liquid while browning, drain it off. You do not want to steam your meat in the liquid. Reserve the liquid, you can use this later if you need to add more liquid to the chili.


Next, I saute diced onions, bell pepper, garlic and jalapenos until just soft. I add my browned meat, roasted poblanos, chili powder, cinnamon, smoked pasprika, chilpolte, canned San Marzano tomatoes, salt and pepper. I let this simmer, occasionally stirring, until the meat is tender (as much as 4 to 5 hours). At the half way point I taste, re-season and add dark brown sugar.  



 The last hour and a half of cooking, I add canned, drained hominy and several shots of tequila. 
The tequila creates a wonderful aroma with all the chili seasonings, but you can skip the alcohol if you prefer. Near the end, I stir in masa to thicken. The masa also adds a nice earthy flavor. 

We like to top our bowls of chili with cheese, diced avocado, onion and sour cream infused with lime zest.

Don't forget to make the corn bread.










Such a creamy whole wheat macaroni and cheese. It's very comforting to watch them smile while they eat it.


Portabello Burger

Hands down my juicy cheese burgers are a family favorite but I'm always trying out meat free alternatives. Tonight we had marinated pan grilled portabello mushroom sandwiches with caramelized onions, roasted red peppers, goat cheese with a smokey horseradish sauce on toasted whole wheat rolls. Delicious.