Friday, March 05, 2004

Chili chili cocoa pop

Maybe it's some guy thing in me, my culinary love for chili. Who knows? Though, let me say, it is Genevieve who makes it in our house. It's one of the few dishes she refuses to let me make (another one, until recently, being oatmeal (...don't ask ;)). I don't think it's so much the taste of chili that I like, even if it is awfully good, but the idea. Chili is a blank canvas. Upon that mixture of spices and tomatoes, you can build such a wide variety of flavors. Sweet, savory, spicy, and on..

Everyone seems to have a chili recipe. I could stand up in my cube right now and sit down with one from every person around me. It's not a discerning dish. Not like something like Risotto (which I think is another one of those "blank canvas" dishes). Chili doesn't care about your cooking skills. You could burn toast and liquefy microwave fries and still be able to make a reasonable good pot of chili. It can be refined and delicate, or it can be bold, brass, with knock you off your ass spiciness. It's a "common man's (or woman's)" culinary creation.

As you've probably guessed from my blog, though I love fine food, I'm not a culinary snob. Maybe I make fun of the days of Better Homes & Gardens, but really, if someone puts the time in to make me food, that's a great gift and I'm certainly not going to snub it for it's lack of exotic spices. So, that's probably why I like chili. With a few basic ingredients, anyone can make it and really create it on a very personal level. And it can be damn good.

So, what's your favorite chili recipe?