Chili con Carne
A recipe from the Sneaky Kitchen
3/4 to 1 lb. of lean ground beef OR combo beef & pork
1 to 2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions
2 large green or green & yellow bell peppers
1 stalk celery with a few leaves
8 garlic cloves
fresh or pickled hot pepper (optional)
1  28-oz can crushed tomatoes
1 12 to 15 oz can tomato puree
1-1/2 cups water
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
red pepper flakes (to taste, optional)
1 Tablespoon chili powder
1 heaping Tbsp. beef soup base OR beef bouillon granules
2 teaspoons Kitchen Bouquet (optional)
1-1/2 teaspoons sugar or more to taste
3 15-oz cans light red or small red beans, or pinto beans

Chop onions & celery & dice green pepper. Put olive oil in a very large skillet on medium-high heat. When hot, add chopped vegetables & ground meat. Sauté, stirring often, breaking ground meat into very small chunks. Mince garlic & celery leaves (& hot pepper). When meat is starting to brown & onions are soft, add garlic & celery leaves, sautéing another min. Add tomato, puree, water, sugar & seasonings. Bring to a boil. Turn down heat & simmer about 15 min.

Drain & rinse beans. Add to chili & stir to mix. Taste, & add more chili powder or hot pepper if needed. Cover; simmer on lowest heat, stirring occasionally. If chili starts to stick or becomes too thick, add more water. It can be eaten after another 15 min., but an hour or two on very low heat makes tastier chili.

Serve with crackers, crusty bread or around a mound of white rice. Garnishes: a bit of sour cream and/or sprinkle with a little fresh chopped cilantro.