Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Is It Chile Powder Or Chili Powder and A Give Away

In looking around on the web, chili powder and chile powder seem to be used interchangeably – even Wikipedia failed me, but I believe they are very different spices.  But let me back up a step further, and remember this is just me and represents no official definitions - even though it should J
Besides a country, a chile is the fruit of plants from the genus Capsicum and when these fruits are dried and ground they are chile powder.  Chili, on the other hand is a stew made from meat and peppers and often many other things, but that’s a whole nother can of worms.  This stew is frequently seasoned with a combination of spices that when mixed together is called chili powder.

We make pretty good chili around here, but ours is more of a soup containing sweet peppers, tomatoes, onions, ground beef, beans, and seasoned with chili powder, additional cayenne, S&P.   So if you want to say that this really isn’t chili, I won’t argue – remember, I’m the same way when it comes to what is real BBQ.  And this chili should not be confused with hot dog sauce, which is also called chili in some parts.

Having said all of this here are some links and shots of some of our chili efforts.

Brisket Chili 

Chili Pie

If you’ve been around my blog awhile, you know it is just a journal on which I avoid religion and politics and have no advertising or vendor associations. Obviously, others have a different role for their blogs, such as revenue generation, railing about issues, etc, becoming famous Ala Pioneer Woman, etc. - that’s just not mine, although I may occasionally do a little railing J. 

However, I like the idea of a giveaway to those of you who stop by my blog, so I am giving to three readers a one pint jar of the chili powder I’ve been making for several years and is enjoyed by friends and family. 

It contains the following dried ingredients chipotle chile powder, ancho chile powder (home grown if I have it), garlic powder, cumin, Mexican oregano, paprika, onion powder, cilantro, and thyme.  It contains no salt, pepper, or cayenne as I like to add them to the chili to taste.  I also see it as a base to build from by adding more of some of the ingredients, or other ingredients, to suit your taste.

To enter, just leave a comment advising you will try it - you could also tell us what type of chili you make, then I’ll get someone to teach me how to do that random number generator thingy to select the winners.  The drawing will be on Wednesday (5/24/12) and you can get one entry for each day you leave any comment (one/day) until 12am EDT Tuesday (5/23/12) – seven entries possible.  I'll make the chili powder fresh after the drawing.

All photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.



  1. I would like to try this. I make chili with beans and barley... no meat here.

  2. These two words constantly baffle me in the spell checker. Most often the checker thinks they are wrong. Thanks for clearing it up.

    I'm not much of a chili maker myself, but always enjoy a bowl of the good stuff.

    I hope a real chili head is the lucky winner of your special seasoning Larry. Knowing you, it's going to be great.

  3. Chili is one of the few bean dishes my family will willingly eat on a regular basis. But I have to admit I have never put cilantro in mine. I would love to try your spice mix (or attempt to make my own). Now I may have to go make chili for dinner since I have some fresh cilantro ready for harvesting!

  4. You put a can of worms in your chili?? :) Years ago, to set the whole confusion straight in my mind, I made a household rule: Chili is a soup, Chile is a pepper and the mixture of ingredients that flavor the soup is Chili Powder (or seasoning) If it's a single powder, such as Ancho, then it's Ancho Chile powder. I've always been mad at myself for naming my little New Mexico born dog Chili with an "i". I didn't mean for him to be a soup. With all that said, I want to win that seasoning mix and I'm heading over to Savory Spice website to see how they handle the "i" vs "e" "situation".

  5. Ooooh!! Pick me!! I would love to try your spice mix, Larry! And that random number thingy is a breeze :)

  6. yup, I am with you - chiles and chili are different yet I still get confused at times... I like to thinks chiles are fresh whereas chili as in powder is not - but then as you say, it's just me...
    what to do with your chili powder - this time of year I would use it in a rub, in marinades, in a base for Mexican sauces, as a seasoning for tamale pie (endless list) and in the fall and winter in my ever loving Real Deal Chili recipe...

  7. Oooh, I want to try your mix!!! I LOVE making chili and I almost always make my family's favorite Five Bean Chili with Steak and Spicy Sausage. Each time I try to make a different chili, my husband and kids politely ask what I did differently. ha ha

    Have a great day, Larry!

  8. Here, down-under in New Zealand, we call both Chilli! For us Chile (pronounced Chill-ay) is South American Nation.

    (Wonderful give-away offer, Larry, but please exclude me as our Dept of Agriculture has very strict bio-security laws so I doubt your Chile Powder would be allowed in).

    Ah - isn't the development and divergence of the English language within and amongst English speaking countries wonderful; proof it is a living and always developing language. Sometimes baffling even if we've grown up with it!!!

    I hope all your summer veggies are developing well, sending care and huggles to you each and both, and happy pats and scritches to your cat,

    Michelle down in Wellington, NZ

  9. Hmmmmm...homemade chili powder! I would love to sample it...
    I make all kinds of chili/e with chile/i (must I go back to my blog and correct all of the incorrect entries? :-( ) I doubt I will keep it straight but I will try.

    Lately I have been thinkin' about my very spicy black bean has Louisiana Hot Sausage in it. I love every spoonful!

  10. Growing up in Texas, it is almost impossible not to like chile. Whoever wins some of your homemade chili powder will indeed be a lucky person. It is a kind gesture on your part.

  11. I am the proud holder of Big Dude's chili powder as well as some chile powder! I think I may be down to just tabasco, though. All my chili gets quite a nice kick from it! And if you need help with random drawing type stuff, let me know. I'm glad to come down and help. I hope you're having a great day and enjoying the weather!

  12. I no longer make chili, because my dearly beloved can't tolerate spicy foods, but it's really nice of you to offer this, Larry! Three lucky people will surely enjoy this.

    And I follow the same guidelines you do on blogging. There would be bound to be people who disagree with your views, and would feel free to be nasty about it. Who needs it? But your jokes are always funny, so I'm happy when I see them!

  13. I usually see the pepper spelt as Chili rather than Chile (the country)...

    It always is a bit confusing in some recipes when they specify 'Chili Powder' as opposed to 'Powdered Chili' as the former often means a spice blend for Chilli con Carne which combines chill with other spices, chiefly Cumin...

  14. What a great giveaway! I have gotten into making my own seasoning blends lately. I bet your chili blend is great!

  15. I would use this for my chili which I like to make with bacon, cocoa powder, and cinnamon along with chili powder and cumin- but I would sub in yours! What a great idea to make your own chili spice mix!

  16. I think our meager Midwestern chili needs some of your chile seasoning! My mother wasn't a very adventurous cook and I make her recipe. Sad, but true.

  17. Fresh chili powder!!! I didn't know there was such a thing! I would use it in chili, because I am boring and can't be more imaginative at 6:45 am.

  18. Hey Larry,(This is Terry)I would love to try some of your chili powder!!I love reading your blog because you give a man's view which is rare in cooking circles.

  19. I use chile powder in my Mexican dishes, chili, soup, etc. Great giveaway Larry.

    The chili pie looks and sounds really fantastic!

  20. I would love to win your chile powder Larry. My chili changes with my whims, so anything goes. I've made it with chocolate in it and I've made it with campbell's tomato soup.

  21. That's the down side to "power reading", I miss contest deadlines, lol.

    But yeah, chili powder is for chili and chile powder is a dried ground chile without other additives. I agree with your rationale.


I appreciate and enjoy your comments