Tag Archives: chipotle

Chipotle, chocolate, and porter chili


I made steak last night and wasn’t terribly thrilled with it. It was a large package from Winco and I had quite a bit left over this morning. Henry suggested tacos, but I kind of wanted to completely repurpose the steak because I wasn’t in love with the marinade I made. I figured the spices would make it palatable. To my surprise, this chili is the best I’ve made. Ingredients:

  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 poblano pepper, chopped
  • 2 cans of beans (I used kidney and black)
  • 1 large (28 ounces, I think) can of Muir Glen (crushed, fire roasted) tomatoes
  • 1 box of (low sodium) chicken stock (32 ounces)
  • 1 pound of hamburger
  • some leftover, medium rare cooked steak from last night, chopped
  • small handful of semi sweet chocolate chips
  • a few glugs of chipotle hot sauce
  • “some” chili powder
  • “some” Mexican Oregano
  • “some” cumin
  • “some” salt and pepper
  • 12 ounces or so of Porter

Chop, mince, open cans, pour, brown, drain, sweat, combine, and simmer for hours. Hours.

Amazing. I’ve never put chocolate in chili before. Try it. Please.



A Saturday Alone


This rarely happens. Clean apartment, minimal school work to catch up on, a full fridge…

So today, I am in the process of making a Ree Drummond recipe that I’ve been eyeballing since she first posted it almost two years ago on her blog. Her original recipe is simple: pork shoulder roast, chipotle peppers in adobo, and Dr. Pepper. Doesn’t get any easier than that. I had to tweak mine, of course. I don’t think I’ve ever followed a recipe to the letter. Hers seems pretty perfect so I hope I didn’t screw it up. To mine, I added garlic and orange juice. It’s been in the oven since 8:30 and needs to go for about six hours. The apartment smells ridiculous. I didn’t use the entire can of peppers–I was worried the recipe seemed a bit one-note. Sweet and hot seemed to be the only thing it had going on. We’ll see. I’m excited to taste it.

Update: The pork stayed in the oven for about five hours. I pulled it out, shredded it, and strained the liquid. I put the liquid, which consisted of Dr. Pepper, chipotle, orange juice, and garlic, in the freezer so that the fat would congeal. I wasn’t so sure about the liquid, so to hedge my bets, I began another barbeque sauce. The sauce was just ketchup, chipotles, Dr. Pepper, and orange juice–plus some cooked down onions from the roasting process. I simmered that sauce for awhile and watched it reduce beautifully. Eventually, I checked the roast drippings and skimmed the fat–the flavor of that sauce was identical to the one on the stove save for one thing: the sweet porky goodness that came from bathing a roast for several hours. I added the roast juices to the new sauce and now they are simmering away.

Wow. This, hands down, is the simplest and more delicious preparation of pulled pork I have made or tasted. I highly recommend it!

Mexican Steak Sandwiches

  • 1 steak
  • half of an onion, sliced
  • 1 Roma tomato, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • cumin (some)
  • mexican oregano (enough…don’t you love how exact I am?)
  • juice of half a lime, juiced
  • one chipotle, minced and deseeded
  • s and p
  • baguette
  • pepper jack cheese
  • beer (some Widmer Dark Saison Brewmasters’ Release)
  • garlic, minced

Marinate the steak in the lime juice, salt and pepper, cumin, and Mexican oregano.

While it’s doing it’s thing, saute the onions, garlic, and red pepper.  Add the chipotle pepper, minced, but make sure to scrape out the inner seeds and membrane so your final dish isn’t ridiculously spicy.

After the veggies are nice and caramelized, take them out of the pan and set them aside in a bowl.

Fry the steak in some butter in the pan you sauteed the veggies in.

When the steak is done, let it rest.

Add the peppers and such back to the pan and pour in some beer. Throw in a sliced Roma tomato. Let it simmer and reduce.

Slice the steak.

Cut the bagette in half and open it up. Butter both sides and broil it, cut side up.  Add the cheese slices to the bread after a minute or so. Watch it carefully–broilers can take some from toasty to charred beyond recognition in seconds.

Assemble the sandwiches once the bread is ready to come out. Layer the peppers and onions with the steak.

Delicious sandwiches. Would be good with chicken, shrimp–any protein, really. That marinade lends itself well to whatever you slather it on. If you decide to try it, you may want to marinate your meat longer than the 45 minutes I did. Overall, I’m really pleased with how the meal turned out. Perfect for a night watching Battlestar Galatica, curled up on the couch.

The First Meal I Cooked for My Husband or Damn You, Rachel Ray!



My ex-husband and I met when we were in college in Cheney, Washington.  We dated for two weeks and were married a short five months later.  It was ridiculous, romantic, and dizzying.

I was living in the dorms when we met.  A foodie, even in a dorm living situation, I had a full set of knives, pots, pans, and utensils that I pulled down from my bookshelves on a regular basis to cook for friends.  I invited my future husband to eat a dorm-cooked meal with me and my roommate soon after we started dating.

The only thing I knew about his taste in food was that he loaded everything with hot sauce.  Everything.  Drowned. Drenched. Buried. Flooded.  Soaked.

So, with this limited information, I scoured the Internet for recipes.  At that time, I was a huge Rachel Ray fan.  30 Minute Meals, 40 Dollars a Day…I was addicted to her cutesy food nicknames and the way she talked to her food as she cooked.  “Get into the hot-tub (what she calls her pots or pans), kids!” she’d shriek to her chorizo.  Naturally, her website was the first one I went to and this is what I cooked:  Smoky Orange BBQ Chicken Sandwiches


The recipe is simple enough: Grill some chicken breasts and make the smoky orange bbq sauce.

Sauce ingredients:

  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 3 chipotle peppers (smoky hot peppers) in adobo sauce, found in cans in Mexican foods section
  • 1/2 cup ketchup, eyeball it
  • 1/4 cup orange juice concentrate
  • 1 cup chicken broth

Basically, all you do is sauté the onion, put the other ingredients into a blender, blend, pour liquid into the pan with the onion, simmer, and reduce.

Now, I’m not one for following directions exactly.  And at this point in my culinary experience, I had never cooked with chipotle peppers before.  Instead of three chipotle peppers, I probably added five.  Or the whole can.  I don’t remember.

I finished the sauce, cooked the chicken breasts, put the sandwiches together, and plated them up for the roommate and the future-mate.  The roommate was a picky (read: weird) eater, anyway.  She used to eat meals that consisted of white rice with sugar on half and soy sauce on the other.  I didn’t expect her to love Rachel’s sandwich.  But I fully expected the boyfriend to love them.  (Especially because I didn’t realize that I turned the sauce into citrus-y, liquid fire.)

He loved them.

With tears streaming down his face, with me quietly cursing the Scoville units under my breath (I told him I could cook! Look at him; he’s weeping!), he ate the entire sandwich and then finished my roommate’s.

He said he loved it.  Still says he loved it.