Chili con Curry, An International Twist

There must be thousands of chili recipes. Nearly everyone has one, even me. Some start with an already made chili base and build from there. Others use all scratch ingredients including chunks of roast beef. Some use things like dark chocolate or coffee. Others use chicken and white beans.

Here’s another idea to try, especially if you like things with an African or South Asian kick. Add curry powder to your chili.

Curry powder is an interesting spice. It is a blend of many spices. There are nearly as many recipes for this as there are for chili. The most common ingredients are  coriander, turmeric, cumin, fenugreek and red pepper. Some blends also use garlic, ginger, fennel seed, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, nutmeg and black pepper.

As we can see, there’s a bit of heat to this mixture, mostly from the peppers. But you’ll also notice that it has a lot of aromatic spices, which is common not only in South Asia but in Eastern Africa. There may be a connection there.

I like to add a little curry to my rice when I’m cooking it. But only just a little. It adds some wonderful color. But more than anything, it adds a perfume to the rice that’s very enticing. It goes great with beans or chicken.

While we associate curry powder most with Indian cuisine, it goes great with Mexican, African or even Southern European dishes. If you have some more ideas for using this spice blend, let us know in the comments. If you haven’t tried it lately, maybe now is a good time to experiment.

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