Chili Con Chicken Cardboard!

Posted on Sunday, January 31, 2010 | 2 comments

   This weekend has been an utter bust in terms of doing anything that I could take pictures of. Having a sinus infection that leaves you vacantly drooling on yourself will tend to do that, though.
   We did go see Avatar last night, since we'd purchased our tickets before I got sick, and we didn't want the money to go to waste. I'm glad we forced ourselves to go--it was a great movie, as I'm sure you all know, since I'm probably one of the few remaining people who hadn't seen it until now. I'm definitely glad that we opted to see it in 3D, too. I'd had my doubts as to whether or not I'd make it though a movie that was almost 3 hours long (weak bladder, short attention span, spastic legs, plus a sinus infection), but the time flew by so quickly that I wasn't ready for the movie to end when it did!
  ....Tonight for dinner, we opted for chili, since it's idiot-proof if you use a seasoning packet, and I'm all for idiot-proof on a day when even staying awake was hard work. Plus, it seemed like one of the few choices I might actually be able to taste. The past few days, most things have tasted somewhat like how I'd imagine cardboard to taste: bland and chock-full of nothingness. Needless to say, I haven't exactly been eating like I usually do.
  Anyway, being the health freak that I am, we used chicken instead of the chili package recommendation of beef or ground turkey. Plus, you just can't find turkey in Japan, so it's a moot point anyway. I also threw in some shiitake mushrooms, for a little extra flavoring and an Asian-fusion spin. Sounds good, right?
  ...Now, it's pretty hard to screw up chili, especially chili made from a spice mix. But even to my dampened taste buds, tonight's end product seemed...lacking. Dull. More dull than dead-tastebud-dull. At first we tried blaming it on the poor chicken. 'Stupid low-fat ground chicken, you weren't good enough to season the chili!' Chicken had no rebuttal, not even a 'peep' in his own defense, but I soon gave up harassing him after my gummy-slow brain reminded me that I've used low-fat chicken in chili recipes countless times before, no problem.
  Yuki then stopped asking what was causing the problem and instead went out solving it, mainly by liberally pouring Cajun spice mix over every spoonful of chili. He had me try some, and it really did make a big difference. I looked at the nutrition label to see what was in the stuff...lots of salt! And it was at about that point that I realized I'd used a reduced-sodium package of chili spices when making the chili. There you have it, folks! Reduced salt = healthy = tastes like a packing box, apparently. Thank you, McCormick spice makers (I wish there were an option to make that drip with sarcasm).
. Next time, assuming that my brain has recovered from this sinus infection, I'm going to make my own recipe from scratch. I'm pretty sure that it'll taste better and still have less salt than the reduced-sodium cardboard version that's on the market!

                    At least it looked good....


marlow said...

outback steakhouse in sakae got rid of their chili on their menu. can you believe it?!... i'm super sad about it. they said it wasn't popular enough. we should protest in the streets. maybe in the spring- it's just to cold now.

Kristel said...

What?? How could they get rid of the chili?? I would've thought enough foreigners would order it to keep it on the menu? Let me know when the protest is, and Yuki and I'll be sure to plan a drive to Nagoya on that day! =)