Sautéed Green Beans

My mom made this years ago from a magazine recipe – Good Housekeeping or Southern Living, probably. I decided I wanted to make it for Thanksgiving this year, but she didn’t have the recipe anymore. I remembered the ingredients and the cooking method, so I just started making up the proportions. I think it turned out rather well.

1 lb fresh green beans
1 tsp salt
1 red bell pepper, sliced into strips
1 large shallot, sliced thin
2-3 T butter
1/2 tsp lemon pepper

1. Trim the ends off of the beans and give them a good rinse. Add the beans and salt to a large stock pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and simmer briefly – 2 minutes for very crisp beans, 5 for well-cooked. Drain beans and set aside.

2. Bring a large skillet to medium high heat. Melt butter in pan and add bell pepper and shallots. Cook until pepper softens and shallot is transparent, then add beans and the rest of the butter. Turn heat down to medium low and stir beans frequently, until heated through. Add lemon pepper and serve.

Perfect Chili

This is originally from here, but I made a few changes. I was tempted to add more spicy elements, but was glad I didn’t – the chili powder, chipotle pepper and pepper flakes really combine to create a nice, cumulative burn.

2 T olive or vegetable oil
1 onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 large chipotle pepper, finely chopped
1 lb ground beef
1 T chili powder
1 T ground cumin
1 t salt
2 t cocoa powder
1 large pinch red pepper flakes
1 T molasses
1 c chicken broth
1 can stewed tomatoes
2 cans kidney beans
1 c amber beer
1 c tomato sauce
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

In a large Dutch oven, heat oil to medium and sauté the onion, garlic and chipotle until tender. Add the ground beef and cook until mostly done, then drain fat. Combine chili powder, cumin, salt, cocoa and red pepper flakes and stir into meat until just fragrant. Add molasses, broth and tomatoes and break up tomatoes with spoon, then add beans. Allow to simmer for 10-15 minutes, the stir in beer, tomato sauce and Worcestershire. Simmer on low heat, stirring occasionally for at least 45 minutes or until thickened.