Chili Recipe for a Quick Meal made with Homegrown Produce


Simply Organic Chili

Everything my husband, John Ivanko, and son, Liam, have been doing for the last two decades has prepared us for now. We know millions of Mother Earth News readers have been on the same path, with sustainability, self-reliance, a focus on the local economy, community networking and many other facets of homesteading. From steps we took to build up our emergency preparedness to completely powering our homestead with solar energy and meeting nearly 90-percent of our food needs from what we grow on our farm, we’ve prioritized health, the environment, small business, and following our passions that are in various ways captured in our books and Mother Earth News articles that we’ve authored over the years.

But we’re always learning more, trying something new, making new connections, and, as of late, using the abundance of time -- resulting from the covid-19 pandemic lockdown -- to try new recipes, make cheese for the first time, and clear out barns and sheds to recycle scrap metal and get paid a little for doing so. While knocking out a much more involved batch of buttery croissants (another first), we discovered that eating simple meals with homegrown, organic ingredients has just been made simpler, with Simply Organic seasoning mixes, marinades and simmer sauces.

Simply Organic, an all-organic brand from Frontier Co-op, offers an extensive selection of certified organic mixes and simmer sauces as well as spices and seasonings. Since 1976, the Iowa-based Frontier Co-op has been operating as a cooperatively owned wholesaler of natural and organic products. Among the dishes we savored on our front porch for our daily family dinner was chili made with the Simply Organic Chili Mix, the recipe for which is found below.

We sourced the organic hamburger for this recipe from the pasture-raised beef operation of Brattset Family Farm, a 290-acre grass-based grazing farm, located within the rolling drumlin fields of Southeastern Wisconsin. Brattset Family Farm produces 100-percent grass fed and finished beef, certified organic and Animal Welfare Approved. Like many homesteaders, we’ve cultivated strong connections to other farmers to supply us with what we don’t grow or raise ourselves, including eggs, pork, broilers and beef. Homestead resilience thrives when local networks are abundant and strong.

We’re also flying through our frozen vegetables from last year’s harvest, thanks to Simple Organic madras curry, coconut curry, Korean barbeque and tikka masala simmer sauces. We just defrost, strain or drain, dice and cube and then simmer our vegetables with the flavorful sauces. Given our busy growing season, Simply Organic products let us turn out quick, tasty meals.  We used some of our frozen onions and peppers for the chili recipe.

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