Chili is THE ultimate comfort food. It’s hot, filling, savoury, fatty, and it sticks to your bones. Generally when I make a pot of chili I just freehand the ingredients and fix it as I go. In the end it ALWAYS ends up tasting great. For your sake I’ve made a recipe you can follow for it, but feel free to use less or more of ingredients like cayenne, chilies, or really anything. Oh, and do yourself a favour and make a double recipe and freeze some of it up so you can use it later when you need that comfort food fix.
Oops. Just noticed you can see me in the spoon. Oh well.
Spicy Chili yields approx 4 litres
3/4 lb lean ground beef
1/4 lb ground pork
3 Tablespoons tomato paste
2 cups canned crushed tomatoes
1 medium onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon cayenne Pepper
5-10 crushed small dried chillies
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon all spice
Basil to taste
Thyme to taste
Ketchup to taste
Worcestershire sauce to taste
Salt to taste
Sweat your onions and garlic with olive oil and salt in a large thick bottomed pot. Add spices, herbs, and peppers and cook out for a couple minutes. Add tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, ketchup, and worcestershire sauce. Add ground meat and water and mix together. Cover and let simmer for 1 hour. Top with grated cheese (I like to use Asiago cheese) and sour cream. Sit down on the couch with your chili and some crackers and enjoy.
Confit. Meat cooked slowly in it’s own fat until it melts under your fork. Yes please.
Today’s recipe is one of my ultimate comfort foods. The best part is that you can cook a lot of the confit, and if you store covered it in it’s own fat in the fridge it will last for months. Here we go.
Confit of Duck with Rustic Potatoes serves 4
4 duck legs
2-3 litres of duck fat (use pork fat if duck fat is too expensive)
6 cloves of garlic, smashed
10 sprigs of thyme
1 cup rock salt
4 large potatoes
mixed salad greens
Rub the duck legs with rock salt, garlic, and thyme. Let the duck sit with all of the previous for an hour and a half in the fridge. Melt the fat in a pot. Rinse off the duck legs and place them in the fat along with the garlic and herbs, making sure they are completely covered. Place in a 250°F oven and cook for about 4 hours or until the skin on the drumstick near the joint shrinks back towards the thigh. Alternatively you can cook on the stovetop at a medium-low temperature, making sure the oil never boils. Once the legs are cooked you can store them in the fat (fully submerged) and they will keep in the fridge for months.
In a saute pan, heat up some of the fat to quite hot and add the potatoes, cut into rough chunks. Continue to cook on high heat to get some good colour and crispness on the potatoes. Put into a 400°F oven to finish cooking, tossing a few times through the cooking process. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Heat up a bit of the fat in a pan and place the duck leg in, skin side down. Keep the skin pressed to the pan and cook until the skin is crisp. Serve with the potatoes and a bit of mixed greens tossed with olive oil and a bit of lemon juice.
Meat & Bread is one of those places that is down to earth, trendy, upscale, and cheap all at the same time. It is a sandwich shop in Vancouver (corner of Cambie and Hastings) that is pumping out some of the best sandwiches I’ve ever had the pleasure of putting in my mouth.
I first heard about Meat & Bread while I was living in London just through some friends’ Facebook statuses. My curiosity was then increased when I saw it featured in an issue of Wallpaper* magazine. I knew that as soon as I got back from Vancouver I would have to visit.
The signature sandwich at Meat & Bread is the Porchetta sandwich. Piled between two soft halves of a ciabatta bun are juicy pork, crispy pork skin, and tender pillows of pork fat. All of this amazingness is supported by a house made mustard that is out of this world. Best part aside from the flavour? 8 bucks.
They also feature an additional daily sandwich, feature soup, feature salad, meatball sandwich, and a wicked grilled cheese. It’s a small menu and that’s the beauty of it. Simple food, done right, and affordable.
To the guys and girls of Meat & Bread, thank you for your gift of Sandwich.