Old Diary

Chili with Beer Served in a Bacon Bowl

OK — there is nothing healthy about this recipe. But when I saw BACON BOWL I had to stop. Then I had to taste.Beer-and-Beef-Chili-in-a-Bacon-Bowl-6


  • 1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 can chili style beans or kidney beans – partially drained
  • 1 T chili powder
  • 1 t. cumin
  • 1 t dried oregano
  • 1 t Hungarian paprika
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 bottle of beer
  • 1 5.5 oz can tomato paste
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced
  • 1 t granulates sugar
  • 2 packs of bacon  (As needed to line your baking container)
  • 1½ lbs ground beef


  1. Prep veggies by slicing them into bite-size portions. Beer-and-Beef-Chili-in-a-Bacon-Bowl-3
  2. In a large pot over medium heat, add in the ground beef. Cook for 5 minutes and then add onions and carrots.Remove excess fat.  Continue cooking until meat is browned. Add in the garlic and cook for a few more minutes.
  3. Stir in the seasonings and let them toast then add salt and pepper. Stir in tomato paste and cook for a few more minutes. Add in the beer, tomatoes, and beans. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, covered, for about 30 minutes. Add peppers and sugar. Taste for seasoning. Cook for another 30-45 minutes, or until veggies are tender-crisp.Beer-and-Beef-Chili-in-a-Bacon-Bowl-1
  4. NOTE If you want to make this in a crockpot: brown your meat, onions, and garlic in a large pan. Add all the ingredients except for the bacon to your slow cooker and cook on low heat for about 8 hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 375F.
  6. Prepare your cast iron dutch oven by layering the bacon slices around the inside of the pan, overlapping slightly. You want to leave enough overhang so when you fold back the bacon, it covers the top nicely. The amount of bacon slices depends on the size of your dutch oven.
  7. Pour the chili into the bacon wrapped pot and then bring the overhanging slices of bacon over the top to cover the chili (almost like the chili is sitting in a giant bacon cup now.)Beer-and-Beef-Chili-in-a-Bacon-Bowl-2
  8. Place pan into the oven, uncovered, and bake for 45-60 minutes, or until your bacon reaches desired crispiness. Allow to cool slightly and dig in!
  9. NOTE: bacon will add salt to your chili, salt lightly when you season your chili. The beer adds quite a bit of liquid to this dish.

This may not be the kind of thing you eat often — but if you’re really hungry for chili and want something different the instant heart attack might be worth it.  🙂

Old Diary

Memory Games

Memory Game

We all play memory games, don’t we?

We play little games while we are in a campground.  Do You?

Sometimes it has to do with incoming campers, but at the moment it’s all about OUT-GOING residents.  This morning we took our usual walk around the park and for the first time we totaled up all the sites that have NOT had an RV in them at all since we have been here.  Out of 200 sites, 47 have not seen a camper all season.  And out of the rest it’s already easy to tell that some sites will have had 2 months occupancy for the whole year, others 3,  a lot will have had 4 months and far fewer will see 5 or 6 months occupancy.  There are of course a few year round mobile home-ers — just a handful.  And I have to wonder how you maintain a park of this size when just about 50% of your sites haven’t had a tenant in 12 months, and those who do aren’t full for very much of the year.

But I digress….

Our game — is to try to remember from day to day which sites have been vacated in the last 24 hours.  It’s not as easy as it might sound.  In fact this morning I saw one rig pulling out.Rooftop wind deflector It was a pickup truck with a 5th wheel behind, and the pickup had a roof top wind deflector.  And here’s the odd part about it.  This is the only guy who’s had one of those in this park all season long, and I’ve been eyeing it up all season because it is the only one like it — and today when I walked around trying to figure out which site they were in I can’t figure it out.  I can tell you who was in three other recently emptied sites — and I know which sites they were.  But I cannot for the life of me recall where those people were camped.  It’s maddening!

We got into the pool today — the first time in about 2 weeks that the weather has been nice enough to stick one’s toes into the water.  We appear to be having two nice days — today in the 80’s and tomorrow in the 80’s — and then down to the 30’s overnight and 40’s during the day for a few days.  We will not see 70 until after the current 10 day forecast.

Jetter Slide

What I’m looking for


These have served me well

This was the second morning with heavy morning fog.  Today we could not see 1/4 mile.  But we still got in the car and did a little long delayed shopping.  I’ve been wanting to get a pair of TEVA sandals for the summer.   TEVA’s have been the one sandal that seems to fit my feet particularly well and also that enjoys any amount of sole longevity.  Alas, after checking the TEVA website and going to the stores that are supposed to  carry them all I found were pairs and pairs of the same style I have now that I want to get away from; I’m looking for one without an ankle strap.

And while we were out I needed to replace my plastic cutting board.  It seems I’m a terribly forgetful cook and I keep putting hot pots on top of the plastic one we have and it keeps warping more, and more, and more.  I noticed recently that both Walmart (where I did NOT want to buy from) and Kitchen Collection have laminated bamboo cutting boards and I thought I’d give those a shot.CBPY393_1_1  Bamboo is eminently sustainable, and the boards we got (as distinct from the one pictures) has end pieces running crosswise to help maintain a flat surface.   With the limited counter space in our coach a few little movable workspaces are highly prized and I can’t stand working on a warped cutting board.  So, for less than 2 fancy coffee drinks we now have boards that will last us a goodly long time.

I should say, in passing that it’s nice not having an illuminated Check Engine light staring me in the face.  I know I should not have put it off  so long but I’m glad to look down and not see anything!

I hope that with the cool weather coming and the taxes out of the way maybe I’ll tackle the Silverleaf remount project.  And then this morning I was thinking once again about adding a short extension to the desk in the office so that my graphics tablet would be completely supported and more usable.  As it is it hangs off the edge of the narrow desk.  Always something to be done….  But I have three more months to get around to it. 🙂

Thanks for stopping by and I’ll talk with you tomorrow.