Saturday, October 11, 2014

Bevo Sandwiches With 3-Bean Chili

Well, today's the day!  The OU/Texas Red River Rivalry airs live today on ABC!

Excited?  Me too.  I know Sooner Fans already have some special tailgating goodies that are themed for this special event, and are traditionally set out on the watch table every year.  So let me just throw out some additional tailgating munchies that can add to this, and future gameday gatherings.

It's finally feeling a bit like football weather in Oklahoma, and around the country, and the chilled, crisp air makes me crave the classic combo of soup and sandwiches.  Relatively quick to make, and clean up, and can feed large groups on a budget, soup and sandwiches can also be a great tailgating addition without the grill or the mess and time constraints that sometimes comes with tailgating.

Let's start with the soup de jour!  I know I've put out a few different chili recipes, but this one is quick, easy, and very hearty - I call it 3-Bean Chili.  I've added okra and bell peppers in the past, but this one's easy enough that you can just see what you have on hand that sounds good, and toss it in! Here's what you'll need:

You will also need a pound of hamburger.  Today I used onion powder and garlic powder, but you can also use a yellow onion and garlic cloves instead, if you got 'em.  Ok, fry up your burger, adding the onion and garlic powders, chili powder, some dried parsley, and cracked pepper to the meat while it's cooking.  I unusually dice up some sort of green/hot peppers and toss them in at the same time so they can sauté in the hamburger drippings.  If you are using fresh onions and/or garlic, now is the time to cook them up as well - one pot cooking!

Once the burger is done, open a can of Red Gold Diced Tomatoes Chili Ready, and a can of Westbrea Natural Organic Vegetarian Chili Beans.  Don't drain the juices, add them to the chili.  Then add in another round of spices (add okra here if using), and let it simmer while you make the sandwiches.

In my opinion, the part of a sandwich that really determines whether it is awesome or average, is the bread.  I personally like to use hoagie style buns of different varieties, then cut them into bite-sized finger foods for parties.  Now-a-days, you can find many different selections, including pretzel hoagies and my new favorite - molasses buns!

Just look around at all the options at your local bakery or food market.  I frequent Sprouts, as you can tell by the pictures, but there are great varieties of breads everywhere, so try something you've never had reason to buy before, as long as you can slice it up into smaller bites, go for it!

Next, pick out a few different kinds of cold cuts.  I personally go with a combo of sliced turkey breast, ham, and pastrami.  They are really good together, and you can add endless toppings!  But look through the pre-packaged meat section, or go to your deli counter and get whatever takes your fancy, there are tons of options.  Pick up a couple of kinds of slices cheeses.  I always get a yellow cheese (such as co-jack or extra sharp cheddar) and most definitely pepper-jack.

Now's where you get to get creative.  Choose your toppings.  I personally pile mine up with spinach/spring greens mix, alfalfa sprouts, and avocado slices, but there is no limit to sandwich toppings, so go crazy, try new combos, layer it all up and have fun!

After you've built your culinary masterpiece, slice it into equal portions suitable for a tailgating crowd, and put them on a party tray.  Serve along side a piping bowl of chili, sit back, and enjoy the game.

  Boomer Sooner!

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