Monday, November 5, 2012

Smoky Bacon Chili

I love food.

I have a love hate relationship with.  I love it.  But I hate what it can do to my body.  Okay, okay... it's the bad decisions I make about food that I hate.  I feel like I am in this new place learning about food.  I am wanting to teach my girls good things so that they don't face the same things I do.  It's no secret that I battled my weight for most of my life and especially now after three babies in just three years (my youngest was born the day before my oldest turned three!)  So, here I am evaluating my eating habits.  We did low carb (South Beach) for awhile and it worked for us.  Then something would happen and we would fall off the wagon into convenience and not-so-healthy options.

Recently, I have been reading about different "paleo" options.  There are some different ways to be paleo and if I had to choose one of the many tag lines it would be "lacto-paleo" because we enjoy some dairy things around here.  I have already noticed a decrease in how much we use and that is not a bad thing either.  Anyway, I am not going to go into the details of "paleo" here.  There are more than enough sites to read about it.  If you want some suggestions then please ask.  However, I am not claiming to be an expert and I am still learning.  Also, I really just like the recipes that I find.  Most are packed with flavor and are nutrient dense.  I didn't eat a lot of vegetables before I got married and now as I have been looking through paleo meals I am starting to think through at least two sides of vegetables depending on the meal.  I am more satisfied after a meal and I feel good that I am presenting my children with a healthy option.  Whether they actually eat it or not is an entirely different story.  More on that later.  Also, our change is gradual... more on that later, too.

So, here is one meal that I had this week that got RAVE reviews from my husband and my dad who is living with us for awhile.  It was indeed pretty tasty.  HOWEVER, if you make this as is and you have little mouths to feed it will be WAY TOO SPICY.  I just got in task mode and threw it all in and realized what I had done when it was TOO LATE.  So, the munchkins did have to take at least one bite (and they did pretty well as long as the bite had sweet potato with it... and a bit of sour cream for the two year old) and they had macaroni & cheese instead.

Smoky Bacon Chile (from PaleOMG)

o    1lb ground beef
o    6 slices of bacon, cubed
o    1 yellow onion, diced
o    1 red pepper, diced
o    1 green pepper, diced
o    1 garlic clove, minced
o    1 (14) ounce can of fire roasted tomatoes
o    1 (8) ounce can of tomato sauce
o    1 tablespoon garlic powder
o    1 tablespoon chili powder
o    2 tablespoons smoked paprika
o    2 teaspoons cumin
o    1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
o    salt and pepper, to taste
o    2-3 sweet potatoes (optional)
1.       Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Poke holes in your sweet potatoes with a fork. Place on rack in oven and cook for about 30 minutes or until potato is soft and cooked through.
2.       Now pull out a large pot, add your cubed bacon and let cook down.
3.       While the bacon is cooking, chop all your veggies.
4.       When the bacon has browned and is a bit crisp, add your veggies.
5.       Let cook for about 6 or so minutes, then add your ground beef and all the spices.
6.       Once the beef is browned, add your tomato sauce and fire roasted tomatoes.
7.       Mix well and let all the flavors meld together while cooking on low for the next 8 minutes or so, stirring occasionally.
8.     Split Sweet potato and pour chili over it and enjoy!

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