This recipe was originally created for the Arkansas Farm Bureau.
Fall is by far my favorite season for many reasons. It always reminds me of back-to-school time with new backpacks, pens and fresh reams of paper just waiting with possibility. But then it’s also a time when cooler weather, crisp mornings, steaming mugs of coffee and park days playing in the leaves prevail. Around our house, as I believe is the case in the majority of Arkansas homes, fall also signals the return of football season, which in turn signals (to me) days filled with delicious chili piled high with all the fixings.
I’m certainly no chili snob, even though I was born and raised in Texas, because here’s the reality: pretty much all chili tastes good. Beans or no beans, corn or no corn, Fritos or oyster crackers. I’ll take it all and with a big smile on my face. But one thing that has become tradition in our home is the use of dried chills to help season the good stuff. It’s a flavor that’s incomparable in dried spices and only takes a few more minutes of prep for an intense and delicious bowl of chili.