Batch of chili feeds a crowd

A big bowl of beef and veggie chili is a great fall dish.

MCT

A big pot of chili is a great fall go-to dish and a good tailgate option that easily feeds a crowd.

It's one of those dishes where people take sides, and variations are all over the map. The bowl of red you whip up can have its roots in a region or state. In Texas, beans are a no-no.

Cincinnati-style chili is served over spaghetti.

For everyday cooks, chili is a good way to use up ingredients.

Makes: about 14 cups

Seasoning mixture

4 tablespoons ancho chili powder

4 tablespoons regular chili powder

2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

1 heaping tablespoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon favorite all-purpose seasoning (such as Goya complete seasoning)

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

Chili

1 tablespoon canola oil

1/2 pound thin strip steak, trimmed of fat

1 pound ground chuck

1 jumbo onion, peeled, ends removed, diced small

3 green peppers, washed, diced small

2 jalapeno peppers

1 chipotle pepper in adobo, optional

8 ounces cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced

1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes

1 can (15 ounces) stewed tomatoes

1 can (15 ounces) fire-roasted diced tomatoes

6 ounces no-salted added tomato paste

4 cups fat-free less-sodium beef broth

Directions

In a small bowl, mix together the seasoning ingredients and set aside.

In a large stockpot, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Cut the strip steak into 1/4-inch pieces.

Add the steak and ground chuck to the pot and cook until browned. Add the onion, green and jalapeno peppers and, if using, the chipotle pepper. Cook until the onion slightly browns.

Add the mushrooms and saute until brown a bit. Sprinkle with a few tablespoons of the seasoning mixture. Cook a few minutes.

Add all the tomatoes, tomato paste and beef broth. Set aside several tablespoons of the seasoning mixture and stir in the rest. Bring to just a slight boil, then simmer, covered slightly, about 1 1/2 hours.

Just before serving, stir in the reserved seasoning mixture.

If the chili seems thin, mix 2 teaspoons of cornstarch with a couple of teaspoons of the chili liquid and stir back into the chili.

Bring to just a boil and cook 1 minute or until it thickens.