Bacon Beef Chili

6-8 slices bacon, diced
1 large sweet onion, diced
1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 lb ground beef
3 tbsp flour
1 can small white beans (10 oz)
1 can small kidney beans (10 oz)
1 jar tomato sauce (12 oz)
some water
2 tsp Cayenne*
salt and pepper

Cook the bacon until it gets close to crispy and lots of fat has rendered out**. Add the onions and cook until translucent. Add the jalapeno, bell pepper, and beef, and cook until the beef is browned. Add the flour (instant roux!) and stir for a minute, just to take the raw edge off. Once you don’t see any white flour left, add the beans and their water and the tomato sauce. Start by adding 1 tomato jar of water (You need to rinse it for recycling anyways.) and keep adding until you’ve got a soupy consistency. Don’t forget, the water will cook down, and the roux will thicken things up as it cooks. Simmer on low for at least 30 minutes, though an hour to 2 hours is really better. If the chili looks too thick, add some more water. Serve with a dollop of sour cream and some Jack cheese.

*Add or reduce depending on how spicy you like your chili. If you like it super hot, try adding African bird pepper; it’s 3x spicier than Cayenne, but it’s got that same warm, tangy spice to it. You can also keep the seeds in the pepper or use a hotter pepper if you like. This chili is pretty mild.

** Don’t  drain the fat, though! Keep it so you have something to cook the onions in.


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