Herself: Few donations until just before I left. I did books, and dug out a pile of really old “Tom Swift’s” out of the discard pile. Someone thought they were useless. I ran them through Alibris and ABE Books to discover they are going from $9.95 to $45.00. I wish I could go through every discard bag.
WW foods for the day: Breakfast: green beans, swim then yogurt. Lunch: G made me half a sandwich, with a banana and a diet coke. Had another one of those around 3. Dinner: 1 cup of steamed while rice plus 1 cup of Lady Bird Johnson’s Pedernales River chili with a garnish of tomato wedges and minced green onions. Later: 3 squares of Trader Joe’s no sugar dark chocolate…..4 points.
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According to the LBJ Library, this Chili recipe makes a generous 12 cups. President Lyndon B. Johnson's wife, Lady Bird, used to share this classic cowboy chili recipe freely with her guests. She had cards printed to hand out like confetti. Once I broke the Geezer of wanting chili that would burn through the roof of his mouth, I began using this recipe. I confess, I have made a few changes over the years.
Lady Bird Johnson’s Pedernales River Chili
4 lbs. chili meat (beef chuck ground through the
chili plate of a meat grinder or cut into 1/4" dice)
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves
1 tsp. dried Mexican oregano
1 tsp. cumin seed or more
2 tbsp. chili powder
1 1/2 cups, 1 can 16 oz, canned whole tomatoes and their liquid
2–6 generous dashes of liquid hot sauce
Sauté the meat, onion, and garlic in a large skillet over medium-high heat and cook until lightly colored. Add the oregano, cumin, chili powder, tomatoes, hot sauce, and 2 cups hot water. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for about 1 hour. Skim off the fat while cooking. Salt to taste.
Instead of the everyday chili powder one can buy in a store, I often substitute one tablespoon of a mild red chili called “California Chili” out here. Then stir in 1 and 1/2 -plus tablespoons of commercial chili. It makes a sweeter and milder chili. I must confess that I used the wrong tomatoes this time. I used chopped up ones, and it was as if I had used a puree. See what I get for being so lazy. The New York Times tells us to cut the tomatoes up. I use my hands. Handy.
There was only one pound of beef. Ground beef. I had it to use up, so I used it. Yes, “beef,” and I can see my vegetarian friends toes curling as they read. 2 tablespoons of olive oil to brown the meats in. Turkey works well too. I use the same amount of tomatoes, the same amount of beans, 1 cup of water, and the same amount of spices.
Yes, I said beans. Why? Because my original recipe calls for beans. One big can of beans drained and rinsed, and one big can of tomatoes….smushed as they go in the pot. I like the beans. I think I got my version from Haller’s “White House Cookbook,” but I will double check this. Today I found a “southern Recipe” version of this recipe containing a lot of okra, something I will not eat. I note too, that this was originally made with suet which was eliminated after LBJ had his first heart attack.
Delving around to find a copy of my version of this chili, I discovered The History Chef. Of course I found Henry Haller, but not one trace of beans in Lady Bird’s Chili.