Although I am firmly of the belief that the internet needs another recipe for chicken crockpot chili like your groggy narrator needs another morning of her mini-humans rousing her before 6 a.m., when I went to make my own one night, I was dissatisfied with what I found. It wasn’t because recipes out there weren’t good, or well-reviewed and certainly not because they hadn’t made countless other people out there content at mealtimes, but because they weren’t what I was looking for. And, well, as that’s how we got here in the first place, it seems appropriate enough to step into the year 2016, the year this website turns ten, not fighting this at all.
While I’m hardly aspiring towards the Texas Gold Standard of chile con carne — chunks of beef, lots of chiles, and ftlog, no beans — I think there’s something to a fairly straightforward, excellently-seasoned chili. I could overlook the instant tapioca, jars of salsa, cinnamon, chocolate, onion powder, garlic powder, taco seasoning mix and celery on the front page of Google’s results that might be someone’s thing, just not mine, but I kept getting stuck on one point: if were going to run the slow-cooker for 5 or 10 hours, or simmer a chili on the stove for 3, why start with canned beans? Dried beans are more economical, more flavorful and will plump up splendidly in either of those cooking times without any presoaking nonsense.