Graduation and Greek Chili!

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I GRADUATED THIS WEEKEND! It was bitter-sweet actually.  As much as I am ready to be done with the commitment to school, I will truly miss it.  At the ceremony I got to see all of my friends from my very first term in management that I haven’t seen in months and got to hear some amazing things from the chefs talking on stage.  It’s hard to come to the realization that I actually completed culinary school and after this class I am done…OCI has been a forefront of my life for the past 14 months straight.

But you still have to celebrate right!? I was fortunate to have my parents from St. Louis here in pdx for my graduation along with a bunch of other family members from around the area.  Afterwards we all went back to my aunts house to celebrate, eat, and watch football of course.  I knew ahead of time that the weather was not going to bee too pretty and that barbecuing was to risky to plan with rain in the forecast so I narrowed down my options to sloppy tacos and margaritas or chili and wine.  I decided to  do chili with a twist…I made Greek chili with ground beef, tomatoes, olives (i used sliced black), garbanzo beans, artichoke hearts, and some herbs and spices.  To top it all off, each bowl got a generous scoop of feta cheese and a slice of kalamata olive bread (from Trader Joe’s) .  It was a hit! Everyone was amazed and I found all the complements a bit humorous only because they had no clue how incredibly easy the whole thing was.  Brown meat. Add onion. Throw whatever else in. Crock pot that shit. EASY!

Sometimes the best recipes are the simplest.  Especially when it comes to comfort food.  On an occasion where you are trying to feed a bunch of mouths and not trying to be formal, people will be happiest with something simple and comforting.  Plus I don’t want to be slaving away in the kitchen while everyone has fun and is stuffing their bellies! Thats why I like recipes i can make ahead of time and heat up before it’s time to eat.

So the moral of this post…keep it simple. Keep it delicious.

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