Jerry’s Cast Iron (Stomach) Chili

Remember the Cast Iron Recipe Drawing we did recently? As you all know, we received hundreds of submissions, many of which will be in Sizzle!, our new cookbook that’s releasing May 26 during the Dutch Oven Gathering at our store in Kidron, Ohio. (See our May 7 Facebook post for info!)

And of all of those, this single recipe made us all laugh out loud–more than once! We’re sharing this with you here, because we’d like you to enjoy it too. Our thanks to Jerry Cipperley in Nevada. You’ll notice this isn’t written like an ordinary recipe…because Jerry’s not an ordinary guy! Read through everything first before attempting this dish. Lehman’s is not responsible for any hilarity that ensues in your kitchens.

 Jerry’s Cast Iron (Stomach) Chili

You’re going to use a Number 12 cast iron Dutch Oven, and the following ingredients:

  • ¼ cup cooking oil
  • 1 pound pinto or red beans (Dried, and don’t blame me later.)
  • 1 ½ any good cut of beef, (as good as you can afford) diced into bite-sized cubes
  • 1 ½ pounds ground sirloin
  • 1 pkg pork sausage, sage or regular
  • 1 large (#303) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cans tomato sauce
  • 1 cup flour (to coat beef)
  • 2 Spanish or yellow onions, chopped
  • 1-2 pounds fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 2-3 cloves fresh garlic, minced
  • 1 large bell pepper, chopped (red or green or both)
  • 1 package frozen corn (yellow or white)
  • 1 small can sliced black olives
  • 4 slices bacon cut into 2-in pieces
  • 1 tbs garlic salt
  • 1 cube butter
  • 2 tbs chili powder
  • 1 tbl cumin
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 small can Ortega diced green chilies
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 small can tomato paste (optional, helps to thicken if needed)
  • Pepto-Bismol
  • Alka-Seltzer

Iced tea or other suitable cooking beverage of your choice (how do you spell relief?)

Be sure to use that large cast iron pot or kettle…not for relief, for the chili! OK, sometimes, it’s advisable to wear some welder’s goggles when trying to concoct this mixture. Well, you’ve read the ingredients, so you know that. Kick back with your iced tea or beverage of choice, and check out the directions.

If you’re using them, rinse the beans, put them in a large saucepan or kettle, cover with water—it should be at least 2 inches above the beans—and let them soak overnight. How are you doing so far? Good, that’s enough for one day. Kick back with your iced tea or beverage of choice, and relax for the evening.

The next day…

Good morning! Check the beans, dump into a colander, drain. Put beans back in pan and add water to cover. Thow in a tablespoon of salt and the all the bacon pieces. Bring to a boil with the lid on, and then reduce heat to a simmer.

In a separate bowl or a piece of waxed paper, sprinkle some pepper into the flour. Toss the beef around until well coated on all sides. While doing that, add the ¼ cup of cooking oil to a cast iron (of course) skillet, and put it on high heat. When the oil is hot, brown the beef a handful at a time. I know, it’s messy. As the beef turns gray, transfer with a slotted spoon, adding the beef to the large kettle with the beans. Same routine with the ground sirloin (no flour), brown and transfer; and break it into small bits. Do it again with the sausage. Kick back with your iced tea or beverage of choice. Read the next few steps.

Using a small (yes, cast iron) skillet, sauté the chopped onion, minced garlic, diced green chilies, bell pepper. Use some liquid from the browned meat in there too. In the meantime, in the large kettle where the meat has been quietly waiting, loitering the beans (they’re very friendly now), let’s add the can of crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, thawed corn, bay leaves, sliced balck olives, parsley, cilantro, chili powder, cumin, crushed red pepper, sliced mushrooms, and the sautéed mixture.

Next, kick back, grab your iced tea or beverage of choice, and observe the condition of the kitchen. Good luck with that. Take a drink from your iced tea or beverage of choice, draw in a deep breath, and dive back in.

Stir everything together with your biggest spoon, cover, and let it simmer for a few hours.  (If you watch television, stir it when a commercial comes on. You’ll have to resume the kicking-back part when you get back to the TV room. Did you grab your iced tea glass?)

At some point, you must decide if the chili too thick or too thin. Accordingly, add either water, broth or other suitable-for-cooking liquid if the chili is too thick. If the chili is too thin, add tomato sauce, paste, some old socks…(use white ones so the colors don’t run). When the thickness suits  you, serve  in bowls, with iced tea or beverage of choice.

Holy Toledo! After a taste or two, it up to you to decide if it’s time to set out the Pepto and the Alka-Seltzer.