No, this woefully neglected corner of the internet is not becoming the latest food blog. There are enough of those out there to last a lifetime.
But this batch of chili turned out so good, that I had to share.
“Over the top,” (OTT) is a reference to the cooking method, not the fact that it’s over the top delicious. I believe it was spawned in a Big Green Egg cooking forum long ago.
I adore my Big Green Egg. They’re pricey, but literally last a lifetime. Versatile, and control heat better than any smoker / grill I’ve ever used.
But this is really about the chili, not the cooker.
The gist of the method is you whip up a batch of chili — sans the meat — in a large Dutch oven. That goes on the smoker, with a grate over the pot where you place a “meatball” that then slow cooks on the smoker over the chili for a couple of hours or so, dripping spicy juiciness into the Dutch oven below. Then you break up the meatball into the chili and cook another couple of hours.
It’s slow-cooked, smokey goodness.
When I posted to Facebook that it was, “An over the top chili kind of day,” people began salivating. Rightfully so. I’ve made my fair share of chili, had it in restaurants and friend’s back yards. Honestly, this is some of the best ever.
Cooking chili is far more art than science. Everyone has different tastes. I cobbled this recipe together based on what I felt was the best parts of several recipes found on the interwebs. You can, of course, modify it to suit your taste. It’s the experimentation, the trial and error, that makes preparing, and consuming, a good chili so much fun.
Here is a quite detailed recipe.
I wrote it in Evernote, which makes it easy (for me) to find, and edit. A good chili recipe is a living document, and this will will probably morph over time. For you, it’ll just open in a browser tab, even if you don’t have Evernote. (Though you really should. It’s life/sanity saving software. They have free and premium versions. Use this link to sign up and get a month of Premium for free. Yes, it’s an affiliate link, I get a small pittance if you sign up.)
If you craft this OTT chili, or make any modifications, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Enjoy!
Prep time: about an hour
Cooking time: 4 – 5 hours
Quantity: a lot. Almost fills a seven quart Dutch oven. Freezes well!