Direct from Corpus Christi, the beautiful coastal city in the South Texas, comes a big ‘bowl of red’ – chili. This bowl took home a ribbon and won my heart as a fall favorite in the Bijouxs kitchen. A simple bowl of little jewel memories.
Food has a way of bringing us back to days gone by, a place and a time, now so distant can be revisited with just a smell, just a taste. By now my design school memories mostly have faded, but this recipe, which I came to know during those college days, has stayed true. A recipe etched in my food memory.
Chili is chili right? So I thought until I sampled my dear friend CindyLee’s (you always say her first and last name together, hence the lack of punctuation) brand of Texas chili. She originally hailed from the coastal Texas town of Corpus Christi, where they do chili their way.
This bowl of chili differs from any other I have tasted – a deep red sauce, but no, not thick; with a chili blend of spices that leans heavily on the herbaceous side… almost more herbs than chili. I use Mexican oregano, which is less sweet and more pungent that the Mediterranean variety, to give this chili the herb kick. Ground beef along with important special ‘ranch style beans’ complete this Texas winner.
Yes, the chili really did win a prize. Our joyous ragtag group from design school entered a chili cook-off sponsored by a national design organization. Each of us cooked a sample and hands down we went with entering CindyLee’s chili, of course it took home a ribbon. I can’t help but smile every time I cook this chili, still hearing CindyLee’s voice instructing me how to make the chili with her true southern Texas voice.
Cooking up a Fall bowl of Texas chili is a little jewel, sharing food memories from the Bijouxs Kitchen.
As always, enjoy. B
8 thoughts on “Texas Blue Ribbon Chili”
Perfect for the Seahawks game tomorrow and I have all ingredients on hand!!
Perfect bowl for game day! A hint is to mix the herbs together and add into the chili a bit at a time to adjust to your taste. This chili has lots of herbs and gets heat from the black pepper. Enjoy Sherry!
Meaty and rich and herby — but not thick — it sounds like the perfect chili!
Hi Sue! This chili packs a punch of flavor – gotta give this one to Texas! Enjoy the season.
Is it too late to say congrats? GREG
Hi ya Greg. No, never too late from congrats – which really go to my dear friend for her wonderful recipe:)
Not sure why but this recipe turned out extremely watery/soupy for me. I didn’t drain the tomatoes because it didn’t say to, but even if I had it definitely wouldn’t have been any thicker. The taste was amazing though. Any suggestions?
Hi Donna – This is not a thick chili, however if it still remains too thin after the initial 2 hours of cooking, I would continue to simmer over a low heat, with the lid off, to reduce to your desired consistency. This chili has a wonderful and unique flavor! PS Sometimes I drain the tomatoes, sometimes I don’t, so no worries on that. Enjoy!