So, yes, like I was saying -- welcome to another rant and roll
a la Rossi.
You see my ravishing raviolis, it's not like I'm food obsessed
or anything, it's just that I am really obsessed with food. So I
figure why not turn you all into food freaks too and then they'll
be so many of us nobody will notice how weird I am.
Now the trick to becoming a real deal food freak is to just throw
away all the rules and regulations that have been drummed into your
head about what good food is, how to follow a recipe, what is or
is not fancy, and especially what is or is not trendy. God I hate
You have got to get down deep into yourself and find your inner
bad kid who still wants to make pizza out of "Play dough." (Hey,
it could work!)
Now stay with me chitlins, are you ready? Take a deep breath --
in, out, in, out. Now repeat after me... I am food... I am a freak...
I am a food freak... Martha Stewart is really scary... Food is good...
Maaarthaaa isss baaad... Aaahhh...
Can you feel it biscuits? That burst of internal sauce? That's
your inner food freak banging at the walls of your internal kitchen
screaming "Give me a pot and something to put in it!"
Now comes the fun part.
All the recipes for today's column are not meant to be precisely
followed at all. The purpose is to glance at them briefly, then
throw them into the air, scream your head off and do your own thang.
Have a dad-burn party! Make your own masterpiece!
These are one dish dinners and you can accent them however the
hell you want to. I like to accent my chili by wearing a cowboy
hat, spurs and nothing else. I accent my jambalaya by wearing a
big ol' snarling alligator, but that's just me chitlins -- and I
don't recommend doing that at home.
So without further stirring of the sauce, here goes the one pot
supper vittles! By the way, that's Ms. Food Freak to you
darlins. And don't ya' forget it.
The Best Little
Chili in Texas
Sauté a few chopped
onions. Add a few cloves of minced garlic. Cook for a few minutes
then add a few pounds of ground beef. Brown the meat and add a big
can of tomato sauce, a good pinch each of cumin, cayenne and cinnamon,
two heaping pinches of chili powder, a few bay leaves, salt and
pepper to taste, enough cups of water to turn the whole thing into
a sauce, a few good drizzles of soy sauce, a few good drizzles of
balsamic vinegar and a few good drizzles of Worcestershire. Let
the whole shebang simmer for at least two hours and add more water
if you need to. (You don't want your chili drying out.) When you're
done cooking, adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper and hot
sauce - that's if you want to get things nuclear. Top with a ton
of grated cheddar or Monterey Jack and serve. I like to serve with
a big pile of tortilla chips, some rice and lots and lots of ice
cold drinks 'cause it's hot and spicy -- like me.
Melt one stick
of sweet butter and sauté a few chopped onions until they're nice
and soft. Add a few stalks of sliced celery, a few cloves of minced
garlic and one diced bell pepper. Sauté a few more minutes. Add
a big ol' can of whole tomatoes, plus two heaping spoonfuls of tomato
paste. Season with oregano, thyme, parsley, salt, pepper and cayenne
and simmer for ten minutes. Stir in one pound of sliced andouille
sausage -- or whatever kind of sausage you can find, a few heaping
handfuls of peeled and cleaned shrimp and a few heaping handfuls
of cubed ham or smoked turkey. Simmer for 15 minutes. Stir in four
cups of cooked white rice. Season again and simmer for a half-hour
or pour into a baking dish and bake at 350 for a half-hour. Serve
this with some biscuits. You don't need much else, except a cold
beer and some hungry friends, of course.
Yipppy kayaaa and yippy kayooo... I'm a little cowgirl with really
niiiccceee legggs. Bye ya'll.