a recipe: chili & toasted peanut butter sandwich. no, seriously.

isn't it wild when you think something is a totally normal meal that everyone knows about but then other people tell you they have never heard of the combo before? ohhh how i love that. i enjoy it so much when i can introduce someone to a magical meal that will change their life forever. and as a mid-western girl, nothing quite illustrates this as much as a big fat bowl of chili with a toasted peanut butter sandwich. growing up, i always ate my chili with a toasted peanut butter sandwich. my mom would put it in front of me and it was perfect for fall and winter dinners. don't ask me to explain how the flavors work, but they are fireworks in your mouth. the mixture of smooth peanut butter cuts the heat of the chili just right every time. and my theory is that the longer you toast, the harder the bread becomes, thus making it a perfect tool to scoop up the chili. leave your spoons in the drawer, people! so after making a pot a few nights back, i invited my roommate to have a bowl full and, while he graciously accepted, i told him that a toasted peanut butter sandwich sidekick was imperative. he agreed, not knowing what he was in for. when i heard him yell from the living room "wow! this IS good!" i may have smiled to myself, knowing that i had just converted yet another person into a "chili and peanut butter sandwich combo" eater. so here it is, the easiest chili recipe on the planet. and you BETTER enjoy it with a big gooey toasted peanut butter sandwich. 

you can probably find 50 easy chili recipes all over the internet, but this is what i made and within hours, i scraped the pot clean. that being said... you might want to double the recipe. this only produces maybe... 6 bowls? 
2 1/2 tablespoons chili powder 
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cans diced tomatoes 
1 clove of garlic
1 can tomato sauce 
1 can chili beans 
1 can kidney beans
my mom has always been a "dash and pinch" kind of woman in the kitchen. she's very gifted. her kid, unfortunately, did not get those genes. i need measurements and directions and these are pretty simple.

in a shallow skillet, brown your ground beef. drain it. 
in a large pot, mix all ingredients, including your ground beef. 

the key is to let that stuff simmer for a while and don't be impatient. so if you have a craving for chili immediately, this recipe isn't for you. but if you can throw it on the stove for a few hours so it can soak up its own glory, you're good to go. once you're ready to serve, toast your favorite kind of bread (i go with good ol' white and it's delicious) then smear it with creamy peanut butter. 

dip your sandwich and repeat until you're too stuffed to move off the couch until spring. 

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