By The Wood Stove

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Fall Cooking

Almost 20 years ago my oldest son joined Boy Scouts. The year he was a Patrol Leader he wanted to learn how to cook outdoors. He and I started cooking one meal a week for the family. Almost all of them were cooked outside. This was before the interwebz took over our lives, so I was getting recipes from cookbooks.

This chili came from that time. It originally called for dry beans, soaked overnight, and half the meat was supposed to be steak, cut in tiny strips and then cooked. I made it that way once. Then I modified it to the following recipe to make it easier for a group of boys to make on a camp out. It became a family favorite and is my default starting recipe to make chili. You can adjust the spices, or add some extras. Make it mild or hot. It’s a great baseline.

The picture was taken a few minutes ago. It’s October, the leaves are turning, and it’s a good day to be cooking.

My BSA Chili
4 cans pinto beans
1/2 stick butter or margarine
3 lbs hamburger
2 large onions
4 tablespoons chili powder
2 cans diced tomatoes
1 10 oz. can mixed tomatoes and green chilies
1 tablespoon brown sugar
pinch of dried thyme
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon of crushed dried red peppers (the kind you shake on pizza)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
1 can of beef broth
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

In a large dutch oven, brown the meat, about 1 pound at a time until fully cooked, draining as necessary. Use margarine if necessary to grease the pot while cooking. When all the meat is cooked, set it aside. Chop the onions. Wipe out the pot, then melt enough margarine to keep the onions from sticking, and cook the onions until tender and slightly brown.
When the onions are done, add the meat back into the pot. Add the chili powder and mix it in. Add the tomatoes and the mixed tomatoes and chilies. Then add all the remaining ingredients except the beans.
Cover and heat until bubbling. Stir frequently. Cook about one hour, watching the liquid level. If it appears to be too dry, add water to maintain consistency. When it seems ready to eat, add the pinto beans and mix them in. When the beans are hot and the chili is bubbling again, it is ready to serve.

Serve with saltine crackers and shredded cheddar cheese.

Wanting

Brigid has a post on wanting. Specifically wanting a wheelgun in .357 Magnum. I link it for you with a wonderful quote:

My non shooty friends said “you could get a huge, new TV for that cost!” My shooty friends said “damn, I want one”. Some of both said “but that’s old, don’t you want something new and high tech?” No, I didn’t. I had a little plastic gun with all the personality of a Pez Dispenser.

That last line is shiny.

But That’s Your Economic Model, Isn’t It?

Occupy Wall Street cooks are tired of feeding the homeless. But, but, but…Now wait a minute. Isn’t it “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need?” Are you saying these people don’t need to eat? If you have the ability to feed them, don’t you think you should do so? If not, who decides who eats and who doesn’t? That decider, how do you pick him?

Because this is a microcosm of your health care model. It’s just supposed to be provided to everyone. What happens when the providers get tired of people freeloading? What happens when people who don’t take care of themselves, don’t work, and don’t have any money show up and demand health services, and the doctors and nurses are tired of doing it for free and quit? Are you going to order them to do it? If so, explain how this isn’t slavery. If not, explain how this model for health care doesn’t have failure built right in like a feature.

So if your cooks are tired of working for nothing for people who don’t contribute, maybe they should take a break and read Atlas Shrugged and consider what sort of economic system they want to spend their time supporting.

Shocked By It All

It is just about to the point where I could just put up a headline and my shocked face every day. So I have resized the shocked face to make it more usable.

Here, from the Baltimore Sun, is a short article about the Occupy Baltimore’s pamphlet discouraging rape victims from calling the police.

At the Occupy Cleveland encampment, a 19 year old woman did report a rape to the police.

Of course, this sort of behavior was common at all the Tea Party protests…oh, wait…