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Bobby Flay’s Beef and Black Bean Chili

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Last week felt especially fall-like, complete with crunchy leaves and crisp, cool weather – unlike this weekend, with baking hot sun and 85 degree temps. Obviously last week was the appropriate time to make chili. Thank goodness I did it before this heat wave. I knew I wanted chili, but I was looking for something new. I’ve liked most chili recipes I’ve tried, but I have no real chili loyalty, so I’m always on the lookout for something new. Food Network had a bunch of Perfect-For-Tailgating chili recipes on their front page, and that’s how I found this one.

I was intrigued by the beer and the use of ground chiles. It sounded like it ought to be flavorful – that’s Bobby Flay’s thing, right? Big flavor? I hate when recipes say things like 2lbs beef. I don’t buy meat very often, and I know nothing about what cuts are good for what type of things, so I’m always winging it. I think I bought some type of brisket for this. It probably could have used a more tender cut, but after reheating the next day, it was perfect.

This had great depth of flavor, and it had a slight kick to it, but I wouldn’t call it overly spicy. I followed the recipe exactly, except I might have had a bit less meat – like 1.5lbs and a bit more beans. I used Sam Adams Black Lager for the beer, and I was really happy with the way it came out. I would definitely recommend this next time the weather turns cool. I didn’t use the crema or the relish, but those both sound good, so if you’re not feeling lazy and cheap like me, you should probably include those. Oh, and I recommend making some cornbread to go with it. I did not do that, and I really wished I had.

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On the Mend

I’m starting to get “the new semester has really started” school stress, so I asked Brent to help me out by making one or two dinners a week. Tonight was one of his meal nights, and he decided he wanted to make beef stroganoff. He used this recipe, scaled down, but substituted 8oz ounces of baby bella mushrooms for the canned.

I’ve never had stroganoff before, so I wasn’t sure if I would like it or not, but I was pleasantly surprised. It’s not a dish I would probably pick, but I really liked it. Total comfort food, which went well with the new fall crispness in the air.

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Lucy’s surgery went well yesterday. By well, I just mean they accomplished what they said they would. Brent and I apparently did not get the full picture of what to expect after the surgery though. I didn’t realize how awful it would look. Poor Lucy looked so miserable!

She hates that cone, but it is vital that we keep it on her for at least a week. She’s been running into walls and getting confused about where she is. It’s heart breaking to see her so mopey, but I think it’s just the anesthetic. At least I hope it’s that, and not that she secretly hates us for doing this to her.

Lucy actually went for a full walk around the block this afternoon and gets to resume her normal eating schedule tomorrow, so I hope that means she’s on the mend!