Claudia’s Chili

Before I left home for the first time, I sat down with my mother’s recipe box and wrote down my favorite dishes.  As I was making my chili California I had thought about using my mother’s recipe. I took it out and looked it over. I was surprised to find that it did not actually include any “chile.” I remember loving my mother’s “chili” as a child, but I am not sure I can call it “chili” any more—it was more of a German beef and beans.

Note: Since I mentioned her recipe in my California chili post, I think I have to post it, even if I have not made it recently.

Claudia’s Chili


2 cups pinto beans

1 lb. lean chopped beef
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 large can tomatoes, chopped
1/8 tsp. pepper
2 tsp. salt


1. Wash beans three times and cover with 6 cups of water.

2. Bring beans to a boil for 2 minutes and then turn off the heat.

3. Cover pot and let stand for 1 hour.

4. Return the pot to the heat and boil until tender (approximately 1 hour).

5. Fry the beef, onion and garlic in a skillet.

6. Drain off any excess fat and add the tomatoes, pepper and salt.

7. Simmer for 5 minutes and then add them to the tender beans.

8. Continue simmering the chili for about half an hour.


Note: The above recipe is in my standard format. Her recipes tend to assume a lot, because they were squeezed onto a 3×5 card. These could be get a bit cryptic. The actual file card read:


Wash 2C pinto beans 3 times, then cover with 6C water and bring to a boil for 2 min. take off fire and cover for 1 hr. Put on fire again and boil until tender.
Fry –   1 lb lean chopped beef
.             2 cloves garlic (crushed)
.             1 onion (diced)
Drain off any excess fat and add
.             1 large can tomatoes (chopped up a bit)
.             1/8 pepper
.             2 tsp. salt

Simmer for 5 minutes and then add to the tender beans, simmer slowly about ½ hour.

1 Comment

Filed under Beans, Beef, California Fusion, Main Dishes

One response to “Claudia’s Chili

  1. Pingback: Karl’s Chili California con Carne | Jabberwocky Stew

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