Foodie Call: Making a Chili Brick for the Chili Champion
This week on Foodie Call, Justin takes us (and David LaForce, executive chef at El Vez and winner of NYChiliFest 2016) back “home, home on the range,” with a chili inspired by cowboys. Justin thinks he can impress the chili champion with a recipe that operates almost like a magic trick.
Justin’s “chili brick” relies on the conventions of life on the trail — without, you know, a refrigerator. By preserving ingredients in suet (yes, the fat you might find in birdseed), 19th-century cowboys made portable, shelf-stable bricks of chili that could be sliced and hydrated in a cast-iron skillet. Justin’s version gets a little extra help from the emulsifier xanthan gum, and you don’t even have to be an outdoorsy person to enjoy it.