Friday Fun: "Hot Beef Chili!" Cooking with Joy

Hi Protein Lo Carb goodness!

With abundant levels of healthy fat including the all important Omega 3's and CLA!

We've developed a tradition of sorts on Saturday evenings - family chili night. We usually have busy days and want to make something hearty as well as healthy to feed our often ravenous hunger. Over the course of the six years we've been married, our beef chili recipe has evolved into a well crafted and thought-out combination of the best quality ingredients out there, and it's pretty darned tasty too.

The key to making good chili is to have great beef. We've sometimes made compromises for the sake of convenience, time, or money, and have usually been disappointed. The best and healthiest beef -- the kind Rheo Blair would have used himself -- must be organic, GRASS-FED AND FINISHED, and have a HIGH FAT content.
Remember, according to Rheo Blair's philosophy (and real life), fat you eat does NOT equal body fat -- exactly the opposite, in fact. If you are putting in good quality fats of the right kind, the result is a leaner body (and leaner muscle content for the body-building world of which Rheo was an important part). In addition to the good fat (15% the ideal minimum, up to 25% even better), grass-fed cows have much higher protein and nutrient levels including the important omega 3 fatty acids and CLA, conjugated lenoleic acid, known for its many benefits including positive results in reducing body fat. Being "grass finished" can be just as important a factor when choosing your beef: it means that the cows were fed nothing but grass up until the very end. Many beef manufacturers feed the cows grass at first, then try to speed up the process of fattening the cows by feeding them grain, still calling them "grass-fed," but they are not "grass-finished." One of the best beef companies we've found can ship to your door overnight, remaining frozen until it reaches you, and it's called U.S. Wellness Meats (also known as Grassland Beef). We order the 25% ground beef. The U.S. Wellness Meats company also sells many other types of meats and dairy products, all of the highest quality. We use their ground beef for our chili. Sometimes Whole Foods carries a high-fat organic grass-fed and -finished ground beef as well - just make sure to ask the butcher and make sure you know what you're getting. Of course, it goes without saying that the beef should have no hormones, antibiotics, chemicals, or by-products of any kind.

NOW, for the Hot Beef Chili Recipe!

1 1/2 lbs. organic grass-fed/finished beef (15% fat content or more)
1 large organic brown onion, diced
2 six oz. cans organic tomato paste
1/3 to 1/2 cup fresh HOT organic salsa (Emerald Valley is a favorite)
organic dried basil
organic dried oregano
Vegit (a Rheo Blair favorite!)
organic dried chili flakes
Celtic Sea Salt
1 can (15 oz.) organic chili beans, Westbrae Natural (OPTIONAL)
1-2 tbsp. Organic Butter (the REAL STUFF, PLEASE!)

Extra Toppers:
grated raw organic cheese
Nancy's Organic Cultured Sour Cream

Chop onion and cook on low heat in butter until soft; add beef. Enjoy as the fat from the butter, the fat from the beef, and the flavors all blend together to form a wonderful broth of fat -- this is your flavor and the best part of the healthy yummy concoction! During this process, add a generous amount of the basil, oregano, and Vegit, while using as much of the chili flakes as you think is sensible for you. After the beef is cooked, you will be adding the HOT salsa, so use caution (we are spice fanatics, so I usually put almost as much of the chili flakes as I do of the other seasonings). With the salsa, also add both cans of the tomato paste, which will make everything thicken quite nicely. After this has all been blended, you may add the optional chili beans. These are relatively low in carbs and have their own nutritional value (as well as adding an extra yummy dimention), but if you are strictly counting your carbs, you can skip them and still end up with an amazing-tasting (and very beefy) chili. We make both versions at our house. Add a pinch of the celtic sea salt at your discretion (again, keeping your salt needs or limits in mind) and simmer for a few minutes to let everything meld together, continuing to stir consistently. Then, in our secret family technique (developed by Charles), take a couple ladel-fuls of the finished product, blend, and mix back into the rest of the pot. The melding is complete. Serve hot, melt cheese on top, and add a dollop of sour cream. Delicious!

Can serve four (or make a meal for two and perpetual snacks for a happy husband the next morning and afternoon;-).

See you next Friday!
Lorraine Joy

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Information found on Rheo H. Blair: The Book is meant for educational and informational purposes only, and to motivate you to make your own health care and dietary decisions based upon your own research and in partnership with your health care provider. It should not be relied upon to determine dietary changes, a medical diagnosis or courses of treatment.