Tag Archives: chili powder
Chili powder—as a blend of spices—is composed chiefly of chile peppers and mixed with other spices including cumin, oregano, garlic powder, and salt. While there is some agreement about which spices this blend should contain, the amount of each is a matter for debate. This is not improved by the linguistic confusion between “chili powder”—as a blend of spices—and the “chili powder”—as in powdered dried chilies—used in those blends. In addition to the basic ingredients, some add other herbs and spices and still call it “chili powder.”
Jan has asked me to make a chili for a potluck with her new half-brother. The last time I made chili, I made a pot with beans and it was pretty hood, but I knew I could do better. Instead of ground beef I would use beef chuck and some rib meat. Last time, I also used canned broth as my braising liquid, this time I would braise pieces of marinated beef—to tenderness—and then use the braising liquid to re-hydrate and cook the beans.
Jan and I were reminiscing about chili dogs the other day. Jan used to live only a mile away from Angelo’s in Fresno—a victim of eminent domain for the high speed rail—and in her mind the home of the ultimate chili dog. Eilene decided that she wanted chili dogs for her birthday meal—19 as of yesterday.
The term chile (chili) is a complex. It can refer to: 1) a large number of fresh capsicum pods of varying heat levels; 2) the dried and/or smoked pods; 3) the same pods in powdered form (with or without the seeds); and 4) varied spices blends that include one or more of the powdered chilies as a main ingredient.
Jan needs some soft food today and she has a desire for shrimp tacos. I looked on-line and most of the recipes seemed to be sprinkle chili powder on shrimp, grill, stick them in a taco shell, and bury them with stuff. I knew I could come up with something better than that.
Whenever I decide to make my own spice blend I do an analysis of the recipes for that blend that others have posted. By comparing ten to twenty different ideas about what goes into a spice blend I get an inspiration about how I should create my own blend. It should be similar, but unique.