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Fourth Quarter Chili

So-called because the heat from Don Lambert's favorite tailgate concoction could last into the fourth quarter -- and maybe even into overtime. He says the heat is somewhat muted in this version of the recipe. "Don't forget the moonshine," the Shaler tailgater says.

3 pounds ground beef
3 16-ounce cans tomato sauce
1 large can tomato paste
2 medium onions, chopped
6 banana peppers, chopped, ribs and seeds removed
6 jalapeno peppers, chopped, ribs and seeds removed
3 beef bouillon cubes
2 packages chili seasoning (he likes McCormick)
2 tablespoons cumin
1 tablespoon cayenne red hot pepper
Black pepper and salt to taste
1 small can (15 ounces or less) kidney or chili-style beans, Texas or Louisiana style
Extra chili powder to taste or color

Chop up peppers and cook with ground beef. Drain off fat. (We used ground sirloin, so we had almost no fat.) Add other ingredients. Simmer 1 1/2 hours. Adjust flavors.

About our ingredients: We used three 15-ounce cans chunky tomato sauce, plus an additional 8-ounce can of tomato sauce and two 1.25-ounce packages of McCormick "original" chili seasoning. As for beans, we used Bush's Chili Magic (Texas recipe). We didn't add additional chili powder, and shorted the tablespoon of cayenne a bit.

Note on heat: This recipe was about right for our taste, but if yours tastes too spicy, you can dilute with additional tomato sauce or grab a piece of bread or other carbohydrate. (Beer does not decrease heat -- it heightens it.) We served ours with corn twists (rolls found in the supermarket refrigerator case) and cooling muskmelon slices.

Sunday, September 19, 1999

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