Huh? But that's really its name. Growing up, my mother made chili often and it was excellent. We would feast on chili and tortilla chips with super hot, green sauce. I watched my Dad's blissful face as he wiped the sweat off his brow with his napkin. I tried for years to find a vegetable chili for my Hubby and I that could measure upto my Mom's beefy version. When I finally perfected my veggie chili, I couldn't just call it "vegetarian chili", it was, is better than that. So I asked my Hubby for a name suggestion. He has a way with words and a knack for names. He loves word play, which drives his fondness for rap music. Really, it's more than just fondness. He loves it. He can always decipher rap lyrics and he appreciates the way they use their words, he finds it intellectually stimulating, like poetry. So after 45 seconds of silence, he answered confidently, "Nas and Jay-Z chili". I scrunched up my face, expecting something more like "fire engine chili" or "fiesta fixins". Silence. Then he followed up with "Cuz Nas and Jay-Z used to have beef...and now they don't". Obviously. The name stuck, and this chili is da bomb. It's full bodied and meaty tasting, and it's really good for you too. I got 99 problems but dinner aint' one.
Nas & Jay-Z Chili
Origin: Jaime, Impeccable Taste
Notes: The ingredient list is hefty. I usually have all of these items on hand so it's never a big deal for me. Every ingredient plays a role. The small red lentils dissolve and provide a thick consistency, and the larger green lentils provide a meaty texture. The veggies, beer, stock and spices add tons of flavour, and don't skip the garnish. It's not as much work as it seems. Once you get the veggies chopped and sauteed, you just dump everything else in and simmer. I've divided the ingredient list into sections to show the sequence in which you add like ingredients to the pot.
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 red pepper, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
2 large carrots, chopped
1 very large onion, chopped
4 large cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chipotle chilis in adobo sauce, finely chopped
1 19 oz can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 14 oz can beans in tomato sauce (like Heinz)
1 cup dried red lentils, rinsed and checked for stones
1 cup dried green lentils, rinsed and checked for stones
1/3 cup tomato paste
1 bottle of beer
1 bottle of tomato puree (or a 28 oz can crushed tomatoes)
1 litre of vegetable stock
4-5 tablespoons chili powder
4 teaspoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon oregano
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 cups corn (fresh or frozen)
green onions, finely sliced
fresh lime juice
Chop all your vegetables and prep your garlic and chipotle. Heat the coconut oil in a dutch oven or a large pot, over medium heat. Add the vegetables (red pepper through onion) and stir to coat with oil. Saute for 5-7 minutes until the onion is translucent and veggies are soft. Add the garlic and chipotle, stir and saute for 2 minutes more.
While the veggies are cooking, open all of you cans/bottles. Rinse the kidney beans and lentils. Measure your tomato paste and spices.
When the veggies are ready, add to the pot, the beans, lentils and tomato paste and then the beer, tomato and stock. Give everything a stir and then add the spices (chili powder through black pepper). Stir thoroughly. Bring to a boil and simmer partially covered for about 45 minutes or until the lentils are tender. Add the corn, stir and simmer for an additional 5 minutes. Season with additional salt and pepper if neccessary.
Garnish with sour cream, green onions, avocado and a squeeze of lime juice.
Makes lots. It's even better the next day. Freezes perfectly.