It’s That Chili Time Of The Year


Those cool fronts are startin’ to roll in, and here in Texas that means chili.  According to legend, the spicy meat concoction may have been born in Mexico but the chili queens of 1880s-era San Antonio most likely came up with a prototype recipe that we still use and enhance to this day.   A righteous pot of chili ought to contain some sort of beef, chiles (or chili powder) and tomato sauce if you like that.

Now here in Texas there are disagreements about things every day.  But nothing can get quicker to the point of fistfights than the issue of Beans vs. No Beans in a pot of chili.  Most true chili aficionados agree that beans have no place in chili; folks up in the Northeast (we call ’em Yankees) like to load up with beans, sour cream and all kinds of alien stuff.  If you want to put beans in your chili, fine; just don’t put ’em in mine.  And open a window, would you?

Chili is of course the national dish of Texas, and when you are in Austin there is one great place to get some chili.  It’s called the Texas Chili Parlor, and it’s located on Lavaca Street near the Capitol.  They have all kinds of chili and other stuff (their enchiladas are pretty nice) and they’ll even put beans in your bowl for you.  If you order their super-hot XXX chili, you have to sign a release saying you won’t hold them responsible for a heart attack or any catastrophes in your underwear.

I like the chili over at Shady Grove too, that’s a pretty nice place.  San Antonio has a bunch of great places to get chili (try La Paloma on the Riverwalk) and in Houston, well, the best chili I’ve had here is at my house.  Check out the recipe above and play some of these tunes.  Let us know how your chili turns out!  

MP3: “Texas Cookin'” by Guy Clark

MP3: “Chili Dog” by James Taylor

MP3: “National Chili Anthem” by Isaac Payton Sweat

MP3: “Dublin Blues” by Guy Clark

MP3: “The Chili Song” by Gary P. Nunn

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