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Old 02-14-2012, 05:03 PM   #91
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I agree with you Chief, it does mean meat. However Chili is not Mexican, it is a Spanish dish and comes in many forms throughout the country. Modern chili or chilli is regional , such as Texas Chili (no beans) or Cincinnati chilli (red). Chili con carne in modern cooking usually has meat, tomato's and beans. Its kind of like the battle of BBQ, it changes throughout the country. I guess it all depends on where you live. All in all, we all like our chili no matter how its made or where it comes from. Thank for your imput and I wish you a good day.
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Old 02-14-2012, 06:13 PM   #92
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It's hard to grow up in SoCal as I have and not learn at least some Spanish (and that's despite the fact I had 2 years of Spanish in high school). I find it easy to imagine parts of US with minimal Latino population, and not surprised that the meaning of chile con carne is not obvious to all.

I'm interested in opinions about what constitutes a minimal chili (or chilli, depending on regional variation). For sure it has to have chili peppers. It ain't chili without them. For sure it doesn't need meat or otherwise chili con carne would be a superfluous term. And I'm damned sure it doesn't need beans. (My own chili always has meat and never has beans.) Tomatoes are probably optional although I usually include them. Some additional spices are necessary or IMO you'd have a pretty one dimensional chili.

So what is the minimal chili? Chili peppers plus spices plus one of either meat or beans? (I can't imagine any chili that doesn't include one or the other, and by meat I mean beef, chicken, pork, lamb, seafood, snake, whatever...)
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Old 02-14-2012, 06:32 PM   #93
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I agree with you Chief, it does mean meat. However Chili is not Mexican, it is a Spanish dish and comes in many forms throughout the country. Modern chili or chilli is regional , such as Texas Chili (no beans) or Cincinnati chilli (red). Chili con carne in modern cooking usually has meat, tomato's and beans. Its kind of like the battle of BBQ, it changes throughout the country. I guess it all depends on where you live. All in all, we all like our chili no matter how its made or where it comes from. Thank for your imput and I wish you a good day.
I always thought chilis were native to the the Americas. The dish probably has roots in the Mayan and Aztec cultures. If that is the case, then it is a dish that has origins with the native people of Mexico, using the beef brought by the Spanish.
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Old 02-14-2012, 06:43 PM   #94
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If I remember my history, Montezuma used to spice up his chocolate with chili peppers. The Spanish, when they showed up, found the drink very unpleasant due to the heat and lack of sugar. Chili peppers, corn (maize), potatoes have been found throughout excavations of digs in South America.

And Greg, I grew up in a neighborhood where everyone spoke Italian except me. And Son #2 married a girl from Naples. She flunked Italian in high school. Her mother has been here for more than 40 years and still can't speak English. When she shops, she buy food by the pictures on the product. Go figure.
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Old 02-14-2012, 07:13 PM   #95
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I too recall that chili peppers are native to the Americas, brought back to Europe and subsequently to India, Asia, etc. several centuries ago after the New World was discovered. Since I am no authority, and history was one of my worst subjects, I've found the following article to support this (although Wikipedia is by no means authoritative):

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Chili peppers have been a part of the human diet in the Americas since at least 7500 BC. There is archaeological evidence at sites located in southwestern Ecuador that chili peppers were domesticated more than 6000 years ago, and is one of the first cultivated crops in the Central and South Americas that is self-pollinating.

Christopher Columbus was one of the first Europeans to encounter them (in the Caribbean), and called them "peppers" because they, like black and white pepper of the Piper genus known in Europe, have a spicy hot taste unlike other foodstuffs...

From Mexico, at the time the Spanish colony that controlled commerce with Asia, chili peppers spread rapidly into the Philippines and then to India, China, Indonesia, Korea and Japan. They were incorporated into the local cuisines.

An alternate account for the spread of chili peppers is that the Portuguese got the pepper from Spain, and cultivated it in India
Based upon the above I'd say that chili peppers were native to the Americas and began spreading around the world as a result of the rediscovery of America by Columbus. (I say rediscovery because the Americas were discovered many times by many cultures before Columbus discovered it for European culture.)

I don't find it entirely unreasonable that chili as a dish may have been "invented" in Spain with chili peppers brought from the Americas. I'll leave that discussion for the rest of the forum members to discuss. I wouldn't argue either for or against it.

I find it difficult to imagine my favorite cuisine Thai food without chili peppers, and the impact of chili has been transformative to many cuisines around the world. It's interesting to realize that Thai cuisine (or any Old World cuisines) didn't have any chili peppers at all before the late 15th century.

And Addie, just because I took Spanish in high school doesn't mean I can speak it. I can read it at a very low comprehension level, and have absolutely no problem at all reading Mexican restaurant menus!
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Old 02-14-2012, 10:46 PM   #96
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Beans = Frijoles

Chjili con Frijoles = Chili with Beans
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Old 02-14-2012, 10:58 PM   #97
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So tell me about chili sin frijoles o carne. Que es?
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Old 02-14-2012, 11:08 PM   #98
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So tell me about chili sin frijoles o carne. Que es?
Chili without beans or meat. I guess it's pepper stew.
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Old 02-14-2012, 11:20 PM   #99
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I was just pointing out the Frijoles are beans, something nobody had seemed to note before. No meat, no beans you have sauce = salsa.
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Old 02-15-2012, 12:03 AM   #100
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Good answers! I guess if you don't like your chili sin frijoles o carne with tomatoes or onions you can call it red hot chili peppers! Maybe chili con nada...
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