Do you ever set out to make a certain meal and then end up going in a complete opposite direction? That happens in my kitchen almost nightly. This is why I can not make a weekly menu plan like so many organized people do. Saturday I set out to make a hearty warm me up please, Corn Chowder with a side of Jalapeno Corn Bread. Somehow... those two dishes turned into a chili in one pot and a mac n' cheese in another.
Then it hit me. Mix those babies together!
First I started with a vegetarian beer chili. It is delicious and warming all on it's own but paired with a beer and pepperjack macaroni and cheese it is just out of this world. Two kicked up comfort foods mixed together.
Beer and Jack Chili Mac n' Cheese
Ingredients for the Mac n' Cheese:
1 16 oz box of pasta
3 tbs butter
3 tbs flour
1 cup beer
1 cup cream
8 oz pepperjack cheese, shredded ( I used Cabot)
4 oz cream cheese
4 oz extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded ( I used Cabot)
Salt and pepper to taste
Ingredients for the chili:
2 tbs olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1 small bell pepper, diced
1 jalapeno sliced
2 cloves minced garlic
1 16 oz can of crushed tomatoes
1 cup beer
1/2 cup frozen corn
1 cup of black beans
1 tbs of chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp salt
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
Prepare your pasta according to package directions.
Mean while prepare your cheese sauce. In a medium sauce pan melt butter and whisk in flour until a thick paste forms. Slowly whisk in beer and cream. Bring to a low boil and reduce heat and whisk in all of your shredded cheese. Salt and pepper to taste and toss with cooked pasta. Set aside.
To prepare your chili. Heat your oil in a large dutch oven or heavy bottomed pot until it is fragrant. Add in diced onions, peppers, jalapenos and garlic. Reduce heat to medium and saute until the onions are translucent. Add in your remaining ingredients, bring to a boil and reduce heat to medium. Simmer until chili has thickened. About 30 minutes.
Mix mac n' cheese into your chili and serve! Top with extra cheese and sliced jalapenos (optional)