REAL Texas Chili

February24

How long has it been since you've had a big, thick steaming bowl of REAL Texas Chili? Well, that's too long! Here's an easy recipe for the real thing!

I’m a Texan, so there’s one thing you should know about me if you don’t already: I take my chili very seriously.

I make good old-fashion Texas Chili. This means NO BEANS and NO ONIONS ever… unless you want to serve them on the side. (Frankly, I don’t think beans should be in the same room with Texas Chili.) Some Texans say you shouldn’t even add tomatoes (sauce or whole), but I think it adds a little depth to the chili if you add just a little (but just a little).

One thing that separates Texas Chili from those other poseurs you might find is the meat. Texas Chili always uses cubed meat… doesn’t matter if it’s beef, venison, pork or alligator, the meat is never ground.

To thicken the chili, use masa harina (Mexican corn flour) to make a “slurry.” Making a slurry is important so you don’t have little flour balls floating in the chili. To make a slurry, whisk together 1 part masa harina, with 2 parts liquid from the chili. Stir the slurry into the cooking chili until it’s as thick as you like.

So, neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick steaming bowl of REAL Texas Chili? Well, that’s too long!

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And the Winner Is… Crabby Snacks!

February21

In case you’re hosting an Oscar party, here’s a throwback post to one of my favorite appetizers!

The Oscar for Outstanding Food in an Academy Award nominated film goes to Crabby Snacks and Homemades, starring in “Silver Linings Playbook.”SilverLiningsPlaybk480

“Beasts of the Southern Wild” certainly provided some strong competition (the star of the movie is named Hushpuppy, afterall). Messy fresh crabs, fried alligator tail and even (gulp!) cat food had huge scenes.

Another contender: the White Cake that never got served in “Django Unchained.” Of course, “Life of Pi” and “Les Misérables” were most notable for the lack of food.

But back to the winner.

In Matthew Quick’s novel, “The Silver Linings Playbook,” he describes Crabby Snacks as “buttered crabmeat and orange cheese on English Muffins.” Homemades refer to homemade egg pasta.

I thought it would be fun to whip up my version of Crabby Snacks. They’re relatively simple to make. Because they’re made with processed cheese, white bread and mayo, you just know they are going to be absolutely delicious.

This recipe makes 48 bites, so if you aren’t feeding a crowd, cut the recipe in half. And serve it Sunday night during the big broadcast… it’s guaranteed to keep everyone from getting crabby when their Oscar picks don’t win!

 

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Showcase: Luck of the Irish Giveaway!

February20

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How to Make The Best Granola Ever

February14

How to Make The Best Granola Ever

Have you seen how many different kinds of granola you can buy? 

A lot of the granola you see in grocery stores is loaded with too much sugar and sodium… definitely not something you want if you’re trying to eat healthy (and Granola started off as a health food, remember).

Here’s a better idea… make your own. This is a very easy gluten-free, vegan recipe that shows you how to make the best granola ever. I’ve used brown sugar and maple syrup to give it a subtle sweetness and added just a pinch of salt. The almonds and tart cherries bump up the excitement!

 

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Hi…
I’m Christina Chavez

I was a TV journalist for many years, but with a house full of kids I decided to come off the road, go to culinary school and follow my passion for cooking. Mama’s High Strung is all about food… everything from creative recipe ideas to some really cool kitchen gadgets and cooking tips. I live in Chicago, but I love to travel and write about my food discoveries! You can reach me by email: mama@mamashighstrung.com.