“Emergency” chili

I had a couple of bad weekends recently because of drug and supplement reactions. As it turns out, diclofenac, the NSAID I take for pain, doesn’t get along at all with my blood pressure med (candesartan) or with the coumarin in the cinnamon I used to use. I usually don’t use much diclofenac, so the drug didn’t have the opportunity to react with the rest of my daily doses until I had some significant pain.

I took a lot of diclofenac in January, as an old shoulder injury I had flared up again. In the last blood test, done after taking 2-3 diclofenic tablets a day, my kidney and liver functions were all out of whack.

So no more diclofenac for the moment, and switched out the Saigon cinnamon with Celyon cinnamon, which has a negligible coumarin content.

My doctor prescribed a Milk Thistle combo from Herbalist and Alchemist to get my levels back to normal — 40 drops three times a day. Well, let’s just say that dose caused some gastric distress. Acute gastric distress.

I’ve been spending the last week trying to build up my resistance to the Milk Thistle.

To help stop the worst symptoms, i.e. diarrhea, I have an “emergency” collagen mix, which consists of

That blend will stop the  loose gut, soothes the intestinal lining, and helps to preserve the microbial environment I try to maintain with probiotics.

While I was still not quite over the worst of it, I went down to the garage to get something out of the big freezer. Then, I had to leave the garage, really quickly. And to my horror, when I went to work the next morning the freezer door was hanging open. Luckily it was on a cold night, and not during the weird burst of 80º summer we had a few days ago.

The freezer temperature was just at the edge of the safe zone at 37 degrees. So, I had to either throw away or use the meats inside immediately.

Thus, my “emergency” chili, which combines two favorite recipes and the remainder of the collagen mix I had left. You can use this collagen mix with store-bought broth to approximate the silkiness of bone broth. It also improves the texture of thin soups and broths. Or, you can just use another liquid.

If you want to eat more organ meat, the addition of the liver at the end is hardly noticeable. Just don’t overcook it!

Hearts of palm are for me, fake beans in chili. I know real chili doesn’t have beans, but I got used to them from my Mom’s chili. You can assume superiority if you leave them out.


Emergency Chili

A freezer emptying recipe using things I was ‘saving.’ For what? For this.

Contributed by Mscellenea @ Crossgrained.

Published March 20, 2016


  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil or other fat
  • 12 oz slab bacon, in small dice. I had a mix of bacon and pancetta
  • 2 large onions, diced
  • 3 ribs celery, diced
  • 1 1/2 lb venison (I used tenderloin), cubed in 1″ dice
  • 8 oz pork (one large pork chop), cubed in 1″ dice
  • 1 small celery root, diced
  • 3 medium parsnips, diced
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 2 cups “emergency” broth (optional, recipe above in post) or 2 tbsp collagen hydrolysate–or just use a quart of beef broth, and skip the next ingredient. The collagen and pectin can fake out store broth to taste like long-simmered bone broth. In fact, the collagen is the stuff that makes bone broth silky
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 24 oz jar roasted red pepper, drained and diced
  •  your choice hot peppers (I used some thai pickled peppers that I made, and 8 oz jar, which is fairly mild)
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste (depends on the bacon) You can adjust later
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 3 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tbsp ancho chile powder
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 1/2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 8 oz brewed coffee
  • 1 –6oz can tomato paste
  • 1 –14 oz can Muir Glen pizza sauce or tomato product of your choice. I don’t like lots of tomatoes in chili, so I take advantage of the extra flavor boost in this sauce. Dices or crushed tomatoes would be a fine substitution

Optional — to be added at end:

  • 1/2 lb calf’s liver, diced
  • 1 can hearts of palm, sliced about the size of beans


  • Render the bacon and/or pancetta in the olive oil until brown.
  • Saute the onions and celery in the bacon fat.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients EXCEPT for the liver, if using, and hearts of palm.
  • Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and cook for 2-3 hours–no less than 2 hours,or the flavors will not blend. This batch got to the thickness I wanted in 3 hours — then I cooked for 30 more minutes to do this:
  • Add the liver, if using, and hearts of palm in the last 30 minutes — this avoids the liver tasting metallic, and keeps the palm hearts firm, like kidney beans.

Further details:

Makes 4 quarts..


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