Thank you, Shelley, for inviting me to your fun blog. One of the things all characters (as well as readers and writers) do is eat. Usually, authors don’t dwell on the food served. In his or her head, though, the writer knows all the delicious recipes that will be prepared.
In my book The Texan's Irish Bride, Dallas McClintock hosts a huge party for his family and friends and for the wedding of his brother-in-law and one of the Traveler lasses. This group includes the McClintock family and that of his bride, Cenora O’Neill McClintock.
Dallas prepares his secret chili recipe for the party. Yes, he keeps it a secret but—shhhh—I’ll share it with you.* Now that the weather is cooling in most areas, chili is a welcome meal on a cold night. (I love it year round.) It’s easy to prepare in large batches for a party. If there’s any left over, chili freezes well for a quick meal later.
Chili is a favorite for entertaining at our house. I provide dishes of tortilla chips, grated cheese, minced spring onions, pinto beans, cornbread muffins, butter, and honey as well as serving potato salad and other chilled salads. In my opinion, chili is a traditional Southwest food that has gained popularity throughout the United States.
When I wrote The Texan's Irish Bride, book 1 of the McClintock series, I did a lot of research. After its release, many readers asked for a book about Finn O’Neill, older brother of Cenora. Once again, I dug into research for book 2, Finn's Texas Bride. Book 3, McClintock's Reluctant Bride, didn’t require as much research. In November, I’ll release the fourth book in this series, Daniel. This book has me immersed in research to be as factual as possible in Daniel’s treatment. I hope you’ll read and enjoy this entire series (and my other series, too). To get you started, The Texan's Irish Bride is free (links below).
Thanks for stopping by to share your food for thought, Caroline!
Through a crazy twist of fate, Caroline Clemmons was not born on a Texas ranch. To compensate for this illogical error, she writes about handsome cowboys, feisty ranch women, and scheming villains in a small office her family calls her pink cave. She and her Hero live in North Central Texas cowboy country where they ride herd on their rescued cats and dogs. The books she creates there have made her an Amazon bestselling author and won several awards.
You can find Caroline here:
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*Dallas McClintock’s Fandango Chili con Carne
[usually shortened to Chili]
From The Texan's Irish Bride By Caroline Clemmons
1 15 0z. Tomato sauce
1 can Stewed tomatoes
3 Tspn Chili powder [adjust to taste]
1 tspn. Ground comino [cumin]
1 tspn. Cayenne
1 tspn. Salt
1 tspn. Pepper
1 tspn. Paprika
I medium Onion, finely chopped
3-5 Garlic cloves, minced [or garlic salt].
¼ cup Brown sugar (Dallas’ secret ingredient)
Sear meat in a large skillet, pouring off the excess grease as the meat cooks. As meat nears browning, add onions and garlic to let them brown also. Mix the remainder of the ingredients except brown sugar with the meat in a large heavy kettle or dutch oven. Bring to a boil and then quickly reduce the heat to simmer. Stir frequently. Adjust seasonings to taste as chili cooks.
As the chili simmers slowly, more fat will reduce out and float to the surface. Skim off this fat each time before you stir the chili. Discard the fat. About fifteen or twenty minutes before serving, add brown sugar and stir. This chili can be cooked in an hour, but the flavor is best if simmered very slowly for two or three hours, stirring every thirty minutes.
Serve with cornbread or tortillas and pinto beans. Texans don’t add beans to the chili con carne while it’s cooking.