Heaven on Earth

Heaven on Earth

Monday, November 4, 2013

The Saga of the Secret Ingredient.

Once upon a time, our sweet elderly neighbor left some fudge on our porch.  She liked to surprise us with food gifts. Ever hopeful, the girls took a small bite.  You see, Julie was a bit eccentric and had a fascination for recipes with strange ingredients (think tomato soup cake).  What ensued was not a pretty sight.
Surprise (not really)...the fudge was unpalatable.  

I called Julie to thank her.  The gesture was lovely and so was her intent.

"Guess what I put in my fudge", said Julie.
"I can't imagine", said I.
"No really, guess the secret ingredient", she prodded.
Umm....."Marshmallow creme? Cocoa powder?"  "I just don't know", said I.

"VELVEETA CHEESE!", an exuberant Julie exclaimed.  "I knew you'd never guess".
Having related to you this true story, I am now telling you I add a secret ingredient to all of my chili recipes. You will be relieved to now it is not Velveeta Cheese.
Unlike the Velveeta Fudge incident, your quests will be clamoring for more of this dish.
Did you guess a Hershey kiss?

Just one will make your chili sing with flavor.  Pop it in the pot and let the sweet chocolate melt down into the pot.  Stir well to blend.
Unlike chocolate and Velveeta cheese, chocolate and chili are perfect companions. You'll also have a big bag of the chocolate left over to nosh on.  How bad can that be?

I like to top my chili bowl with a dollop of sour cream, some chopped scallions and a sprinkling of grated sharp cheddar cheese (when I don't forget to bring the cheese and scallions home from the Stone House).
You can garnish your bowl however you like.

I started with this recipe, then I decreased the chipotle chili powder by half.  We don't like our chili too smoky or to have too much "heat" from the chili.  I also left out the beer and I added yellow, orange and a green bell pepper for color.

Perfect for chilly Fall (or winter) evenings.   It's snowing again here.  I might have to dish up another serving for lunch...while wearing my wool socks and a large sweater.

As with most chili, this one gets better after a day's rest in the refrigerator.  I doubled the batch and stashed some in the freezer. 


  1. We love chocolate in our chilli, although I forgot to add any the last time I made it. I don't know if you have a tv comedy show over there called the vicar of dibley but there was a character in that who used all sorts of strange things in her cooking, but I have never heard of any one doing it in real life!! I mean, Velveeta in fudge - not a combo I would want to taste. Hope you enjoyed the chilli! xx

  2. Ooooh, that sounds like a fantastic idea! I know it would be too much chocolate per serving, but wouldn't it be cute to put a kiss in the middle of each dollop of sour cream? How 'bout an M&M??? And, I hope Julie doesn't read your blog LOL!!!

  3. Bonnie, that is a funny story!! I have never heard of cheese in fudge, not to mention Velveeta!! I will have to try this if I can manage to save one chocolate -- that is hard to do around my house!! We had a bit of snow last week. Today is clear, windy, and cold. I hope things are well. Joni

  4. Great story about the fudge! I'm making chili this week and will try Your "secret" ingredient. Thanks
    We received no snow here from your storm. Flew right over us and landed out on eastern plains...darn I was looking forward to snow. We did however get cold and wind.....uggg to the wind.

  5. Hi Bonnie! I'm going to try it! I bet your chili is scrumptious!