Introduction: ChilYum

I wanted to come up with my own dehydrated chili recipe to package as part of a Christmas gift for loved ones. I have a large family and wanted to do something equal for everyone and personalized from me! Who doesn't love coming in from the cold to something hot & spicy? It turned out surprisingly delicious and can be kept for quite a while.

Step 1: Contain Yourself

I first had to search for the perfect jar. I came across a line of pasta sauces with awesome jars that show ounce count on the side, fell in love with them, and started collecting. I started this project in November since I had to collect so many. An easy way to get the label off is to fill the jar with hot water, then gently drop it into a sink of hot water. It will loosen on its own usually, and practically fall off. To remove any remaining gumminess, rubbing alcohol does the trick nicely. As the jars are soaking, start scrubbing the lids lightly to roughen them up for a coat of paint.

Step 2: Fill Er Up!

Pinto beans are a great base bean for any chili, but I wanted to have a layered look to the jar with several beans. I collected some good ones! In a 14-oz jar, I used 1/3c pinto beans, and then 1/4c each of black, red, kidney, fava, lentils, tongues of fire, great northern, appaloosa, and rattlesnake beans. you can buy the more common variety for fairly cheap - black and pinto beans didn't cost more than $2/14-oz bag. I wanted to include some not-so-common variety to make a gourmet cowboy-kick kind of mix.

Step 3: Spicepack Ingredients

This is what I've included for a 14-oz jar of beans. Make sure to package separately, as the beans will need to be cooked and rinsed, and the spices are best added near the end of cooking, anyway.
2T dehydrated red bell pepper
2T chopped dried onion
1 crushed dehydrated habanero
1T cornmeal
1T quinoa
1tsp tomato powder
1tsp garlic powder
1/2tsp paprika
1tsp chili powder
1T chili flake
1/2T oregano
1T basil
1/2tsp black pepper
1 veggie bouillon cube

Step 4: Labels

With a simple print on basic paper, some excellent labels triumphed the surface. A little mod podge holds nicely, and would give a good topcoat, but I like the matte look of these. I used jute rope to attach the spice pack and tucked the bouillon cube inside the jar on top of the beans. The lids took a few coats of red and about five days of drying before the smell was gone completely.

Step 5: Test Run!

I did add 1/4c corn to this, and used my slow cooker, but those were the two cheats to this recipe. Unfortunately, I couldn't find anywhere in town that sells dehydrated corn! The results were amazing, for being a dehydrated mix. I made an extra label of loose, basic directions (see pic). I highly encourage you to try this, and please share your mods in the comments! Enjoy :)

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