Jimmy Con Carne

For breakfast this morning I was told we decided to visit Siobhan's family in Belfast for a few days. Sadly, this will mean that by Tuesday I shall probably have lost the will to live. I am a meat eater, I have contacts in the east end of Glasgow. I drink alcohol, I religiously follow Celtic fitba club, I drink alcohol and I have been known to scratch my man bits (discreetly) whenever the need arises. Oh, by the way, I drink alcohol.

In protestant Ballymena, all of the above are duly frowned upon. I am expecting some serious disdain as well as one or two awkward moments should my deeply superlative christian brother-in-laws decide to debate my three... least... favourite... things,

R*ngers FC (now happily deceased)
The Church of Ireland
The benefits of instant mash

As it looks as though I shall be enjoying some heat, all be it away from the sun, I thought I would leave you to try some of your own. Enjoy.

Chili Con Carne

2 large Spanish or Italian dry cured pork sausages
2 large Spanish onions finely chopped 
1 chopped green bell pepper
8 garlic cloves,
1 lb finely shredded sirloin steak 
1 jalapeño pepper, chopped
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground cumin
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 bay leaves 
2 glasses of Merlot or decent Sangria
2 pints of cold lager
tins peeled tomatoes, undrained and coarsely chopped
tins kidney beans, drained
Remove the casings from the sausages. Add sausage, onion, and the next 4 ingredients (onion through jalapeño) to pan; cook for 8 minutes or until the sausage and beef are browned, stirring to crumble.
Add chili powder and the next 7 ingredients (chili powder through bay leaves), and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Drink the first cold lager. Stir in the wine, tomatoes, and kidney beans; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Drink the second pint of lager. Uncover and cook for 30 minutes, again stirring occasionally. Discard the bay leaves. Sprinkle each serving with cheddar cheese. Like most chili's, this version tastes even better the next day. Save me some, reet?


  1. That's a fine recipe. Similar to mine. I use a bit more heat (more jalepenos and some cayenne pepper) and a bottle of stout instead of the wine. I used chicken sausage the last time istead of pork because we have a couple of non-pork eaters in the family. Equally good.

    1. Hmmm... never thought of using stout. I like the idea. I've always used red wine as it goes so well with the rice. Stout it is next time then.

  2. There are benefits to instant mash?
    Stay out of the Ballymena Snooker Club, remember last time?

    1. Usually those on benefit enjoy instant mash...

      As for the other thing, I doubt either of us will ever forget. Back midweek... if not, everything is yours.

  3. Wonderful recipe, as usual.

    Ah, family. No, I will not stand atop the soapbox today as you already have enough ahead of you. Let's just say the family member who refused to take her medication (she's bi-polar) has conveniently declared all of us dead. The one with the evil temper... who spouts quotes by the Dali Lama and Mother Teresa. I'd wish her good luck, but being dead and all...

    Maybe Map and I can write a note to your family beginning with, "Dear Loved Ones. We need our Chef lest we might starve by the need to resort to consuming t.v. dinners and drive through fast food. As my own dear mother always said, 'If you can't say anything nice, say nothing at all.'"

    Think that would work long enough to sneak a glass of what makes you happy? :) Safe journey, Big Man.

    1. "Maybe Map and I can write to your family...."

      Nice idea hen, but please do not be offering skills that only one of you has. Now, if you was to write and Map was to draw a pretty crayon picture....

  4. "Drink the second pint of lager". Excellent. When cooking for guests, I always start with a bottle of wine for myself. I am convinced this makes one more relaxed and happy in the process, and the food turns out better.

    BTW just found you on Daisyfae's comments, and I must say it's a delight to read a blog with such a strong sense of place (and not just a geographical "place"), especially as the city concerned is one I like a great deal, where things have always worked out well for me, even though I'm English.

    1. Looby, nice to see you here hen, any friend of Daisy's is always welcome. Cooking MUST always start with a drink close to hand. It stimulates the grey cells and helps one become more creative. If that doesn't work you won't care either way. Win win!

    2. By the way... visited your place, but you require an email address of which I refuse to have. Sorry.

  5. I gather you drink alcohol?!
    lol =)
    I find carrying a flask helps.

    Try to enjoy your visit and I think I will try adding stout to my chili.
    I can't imagine why I've never thought of it .....

    1. Scarls, I cannae think for the life of me why stout has never entered my own head when it comes to the prep of a good chili. It will do now.

  6. Good luck over there.
    Questions I have.
    1. Can you not sneak a wee flask for the evening slumber?
    2. You have relatives that support R~~~~~s FC?
    3. In reference to question 2. Do they know who you are?
    4. Is instant mash related to the monster mash?
    All the best pal...godspeed.
    Cheers, Sausage.

    1. Sausage, honest answers for your questions sir.

      1. Is the little pope fella catholic?

      2. I married into the dark side....

      3. Yes, but they will never accept my past.

      4. Without doubt, only uglier!

      Now back, relaxing... drink to hand.

  7. I'd love to be a fly on the wall. Seriously tho' I think you are quite saint-like to agree to go. Mrs Chef must be enormoously persuasive.
    That CCC sounds divine.

    1. Pat, there are no flys on my MILs walls... they would be too frightened to land for a start.

      Definitely no saints in that part of Belfast, lots of ghosts and evil spirits, but not a saint to be seen hen.

      Mrs Chef is one in a million, no complaints fae me.

      A ccc on a winters night has more charm than a Jehovahs Witness on a wet day.

  8. No copying and pasting of recipes I see!

    1. Oh aye, you can if you know how dear lady.

  9. Your chili sounds delicious! I'll pass on the lager, though... not my cup of tea, so to speak!

    May you keep your sanity while in Ireland... A flask sounds like a good idea, doesn't it?

    1. Pony-doll, for one minute I thought I read your words as "I'll pass wind on the lager", but that couldn't be true now, could it princess? Not you?

  10. these recipes are wonderful, as you also provide guidance on how much alcohol to have on hand during the process. 'let it simmer while you drink a beer' is the most civilized cooking instructions i've encountered...

    hope all survived the visit, and that the two tins of beans in the chili provided you an appropriate response for when the brother-in-law got a bit windy...

    1. Daisy hen, when people are not as pure as the driven snow, unlike you and I, recipes are far more presentable than discussing our lives, eh?

      No lasting damage fae the visit, but I may soon be arrested for a triple murder if looks really can kill.

  11. At last a recipe timed by alcohol consumption not boring minutes.
    I'm passing this recipe to my brother in law for him to practice before visiting again.
    Last time here his chili was such a success that people still talk of it...through the holes in their cheeks.

    1. Fly, oh I have many alcolholic cooking times readily available on request. You should be here when I cook a full roast!

      What is it about chili and company that goes so well together?

  12. Sometimes you confuse me about switching from food to silly talk about religon and stuff. Glasgo is in scotland so how is it northen ireland. Are you confused.

    1. Okay... how about a Giraffe, cinnamon and a wire brush?

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