Winter is quickly approaching. The cloudy snow-filled clouds are getting near. It is time to make some warm and cozy grub. Growing up, my grandmother’s chili was where it is out. If it’s cold outside you can guarantee I want a heart-warming bowl of soup (just click the link for my Butternut Soup). To me grandmother’s chili wasn’t just about the bomb flavors, but the memories that come with me. That’s what food is. It is soulful. It is memories. It is our history. Part of our story. Part of the traditional. Little bits of the past that we can cherish and pass on. But part of that food art is dying. We have to teach our kids our traditions. Teach them the comfort. Teach them the home-cooked goodness. Teach them the love for cooking and self-sufficiency. We have to forge food connections. Food brings us together. At the holidays I guess this seems more nostalgic than normal to me. Celebrating 5 years since my grandpa’s passing, any moment I can have with my family means the world to me. My friends and family are my top priority. They matter. They bring meaning to my life. They make it richer.
In preparing this dish it brings all this to life. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, cooking is more than following a recipe. It is a feeling. It is passion. It is love. It is a way of self-expression. It connects people. It brings our past into the present. So in making this dish I have taken what I remember of my grandmother’s chili and brought it up to date. Do the same. Take your family’s secret recipe and give it life.
Paleofied Grandma’s Chili
- The Iron You Ketchup Recipe (click link to get)
- 2 cups fresh tomato juice
- 1.5 lbs of ground beef, venison, elk (grass-fed or whatever you can get your hands on)
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 1/2 diced onion
- 1/2 spaghetti squash
- Sea Salt
Let’s Make it Happen: Start first by making your ketchup. I was believed the brilliance to my grandmother’s chili was the ketchup she used, however I do not trust modern processed ketchup so I sought out a modern Paleo creation. AMAZING!
Next get at that spaghetti squash. Another key I believe to grandma’s chili were the noodles. However I have chosen not to eat gluten, so I opted for the lovely spaghetti squash. Cut that baby in half. Place in boiling water (in a pot with a little salt), middle down. Boil until tender. Strain. Let it cool a slight bit. Now is the easy part. The squash ‘noodles’ should just fall out when you use a fork to scrape.
In a large pot put the ketchup, fresh tomato juice, salt, pepper, onions, and garlic. In a skillet take a few minutes to brown the ground beef. Drain and add this, plus the spaghetti squash to the pot. Turn to a low, simmering heat. Cook for a bit (at least 10 minutes). Serve and enjoy!
Note you can also opt to do his in a crock pot by piling them in and leaving. You can also take creative freedom with ingredients. I would add green peppers to this for sure, but they were not a part of the traditional recipe as our family is made up of quite a few pick eaters. The onions only made the cut, because they were cut into huge chunks, easy to pick out. This revision of the soup was so tasty and hit ALL the right spots. Perfect on a wintery mix day.