Plate Specials & Blue Ribbon Chefs
The Heart and Soul of America's Great Roadside Restaurants
2 slices bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 clove garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
1 pound ground chuck
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons red chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/3 cup tomato paste
1-1/2 cups water (or bit more or less, as needed)
1 cup cooked pinto beans
4 to 5 cups Fritos chips (the better part of an 11-ounce
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
Chopped onion, to taste, optional
Diced jalapeno peppers, to taste, optional (see note)
prepare chili: Saute bacon until fat is rendered. Add
garlic and onion to pan and cook until onion softens. Add
beef and cook until meat is browned, breaking up lumps with
fork. (If desired, excess fat may be poured off at this
salt, chili powder and cumin, then tomato paste and enough
water to give chili a loose, but not soupy, consistency.
Cook for 15 minutes. Stir in beans and simmer until beans
are warmed through.
serve: To make four individual servings, use four wide,
shallow bowls. In each, arrange a broad bed of Fritos chips.
Ladle chili atop chips, then sprinkle cheese atop chili.
Garnish with chopped onions and jalapeno peppers, if desired.
Whenever handling peppers, experts recommend wearing
rubber gloves and not touching your eyes during or afterward.
(Updated: 10/30/08 SN)