GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

January 30, 2013

Soldier-, doctor-tested chili

Jack's 'Attack 6 Chili' and all the fixings

Pat's Kitchen
Patricia Altomare

---- — Quite the guy, Jack is; a West Point graduate, Army major with two tours — one in Iraq and one in Afghanistan; a graduate of medical school with M.D. at the end of his name now; beloved husband of Pam, and in several months will be a new dad; and, with much pride, my nephew. His grandmother would be so happy to see that he likes to cook on top of everything else.

I asked him to send me these recipes to share with readers specifically for this year’s Super Bowl Sunday, and I said, “if there is a story to tell behind the chili, let me know it.”

Here is the story behind the chili in E.C. “Jack” Jackman’s words:

“I call the chili ‘Attack 6 Chili’ because ‘Attack Six’ was my radio call sign when I was a commander in the 3d Infantry Division (mechanized) at Fort Stewart, Georgia, when I first made my own chili ... hence my claim of not award-winning chili but ‘war-winning chili.’

“My favorite batch (but not necessarily the best tasting) was made in Iraq in 2006 when I commanded a detachment of special operations warriors fighting in Al Anbar province, Iraq. We had to pull some big favors to get some of the ingredients needed for the chili!

“The current version (with the beer) was tested by my fellow resident physicians this fall sitting in front of the Pats game ... it got rave reviews!

“I don’t remember where I got the recipe for the cornbread — I was never a fan of plain cornbread and this version really adds a sweet and spicy element to the cornbread and makes a great accompaniment to the chili.”

‘Attack 6’ Chili

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil

Two 16-ounce packages Johnsonville sausage links, decased (1 sweet, 1 hot)

1 12-ounce package Applewood smoked bacon

1 large white onion, diced

1 large red bell pepper, diced

2 medium red chili peppers

2 medium jalapeño peppers

3 cloves garlic, minced

3 tablespoon chili powder

1 teaspoon cumin

1 12-ounce bottle Samuel Adams Chocolate Bock Beer (or other dark beer) **

1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes

3 tablespoons tomato paste

11/2 cups fresh or frozen corn

1 16-ounce can black beans

1 16-ounce can red kidney beans

** Note from Pat: I could not find Samuel Adams but substituted with a chocolate stout beer from the Brooklyn Brewery.

Preparation

Mince the garlic, dice the onion and red bell peppers. For the chili and jalapeño peppers, remove the caps and ends, halve lengthwise and slice about 1/4-inch thick.

1. Dice the bacon and fry until softened and the fat begins to render in a large pan. Add the bacon and the bacon fat to the pot.

2. Decase the sausage and sauté in the large pan; use a wooden spoon to crumble the sausage as it cooks.

3. Once the sausage is nicely browned, stir in the onion, red bell pepper, hot peppers, garlic, chili powder and cumin and continue cooking until the onion softens, about 5 minutes.

4. Add the beer and allow it to simmer for an additional 5 to 10 minutes. Add to large pot.

5. Stir in the tomatoes, tomato paste and allow it to simmer, uncovered for 20 to 30 minutes on medium-low, stirring occasionally. Taste and adjust seasonings with salt and pepper.

6. Drain the beans; stir in the beans and the corn. Let this come to a simmer and cook an additional 20 to 30 minutes.

7. Transfer to a slow cooker and let it simmer all morning.

Serve with: Fritos corn chips, sour cream, shredded Mexican cheese

Happy Jack’s Mexican Cornbread

Enjoy this cornbread with cheddarjack cheese and peppers layered in the middle.

Ingredients:

1 cup all-purpose cornmeal

1/2 cup all purpose flour

2 tablespoons baking powder

2/3 cup milk

2 eggs

1/3 cup vegetable oil

3 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 14-ounce can creamed corn

1 cup grated cheddarjack cheese

3/4 cup hot peppers (3 medium jalapeño and 3 medium green chilies)

Directions:

1. In large bowl mix: cornmeal, flour, baking powder, milk, eggs, vegetable oil, salt, sugar

2. Once fully mixed, stir in chopped onion and creamed corn.

3. Pour half of batter into 8-by-8 or 9-by-9 baking pan.

4. Sprinkle cheese and peppers uniformly over mix.

5. Pour remaining batter on top of cheese and peppers.

6. Bake 35 minutes on 350 F degrees or until golden brown on top and toothpick inserted into center comes out clean.

7. Let cool

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Patricia Altomare invites feedback. Email her at patakitchen@yahoo.com, or write care of Gloucester Daily Times, 36 Whittemore St., Gloucester, MA 01930.