uncle wampum's red man chili

Last winter this guy I was dating challenged me to come up with the most offensive fake product possible as part of an attempt to write an expose on the advertising industry. On the Wednesday before the Super Bowl, I informed the original creator that the highly inflammatory product of his dreams would soon be a reality:

Me: So I am inventing this chili recipe for Sunday and (in homage to the above) will call it Uncle Wampum's Red Man Chili BF: YESSSS 
Me: I think it needs to have a secret ingredient though, like weird peppers 
BF: Beads? 
BF: Scalps. 

He is no longer allowed to advise on recipe development because of litigation concerns.

This offensively salty gem is adapted from Drew Magary, who I feel was speaking to me personally when he suggested to 'make it your own because everyone likes having their own recipe and everyone likes bragging that theirs is the best even though it's probably a lie.' This is a can-focused recipe I managed to make ENTIRELY WITHOUT A CAN OPENER, if that gives you any indication about my competitiveness here.

uncle wampum's red man chili // slothful slattern


Effortful time: 18 minutes

Total time: 2 1/2 hours

Serves: 8 people, 6 savages


  • 2 lb ground beef (80/20) 
  • 1 entire onion, which I buy pre-chopped 
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 1 shallot, chopped 
  • Maybe like 4 jalapenos, sliced 
  • 1 container black beans, drained 
  • 1 container cannellini beans, drained 
  • 16 oz. beef broth 
  • 1/2 bottle of decently dark beer 
  • 2 tbsp cumin 
  • 2 tbsp chili powder 
  • Olive oil 
  • Hot chili sauce 
  • Sour cream 
  • Optional crispy onions 
  • THE SECRET INGREDIENT: an entire jar of marinara


  1. Oil in pan. Pan-fry the onions, shallots, garlic, jalapeรฑos over relatively high heat.
  2. Add the beef. Break up pretty small as you go. Brown it thoroughly.
  3. Dump in the broth, drained-but-unrinsed beans, the marinara, cumin, chili powder, hot sauce (however much you can deal with) and beer.
  4. Turn the heat down to a simmer and half-cover the pot. Let that run for 3 hours. If, like me, you use Le Creuset, stir it often enough that it doesn't form the impenetrable brown grease crust on the bottom of the pan.
  5. At the end of 2 hours, start testing. Does it stay solid a spoon? Will it adhere to a chip? Your call whether you like a brothy chili or a pasty chili. I like a chili where the sauce is just a stable coating, not a sloppy slather. Like taco filling. Or dog food.
  6. Top with sour cream blobs and cheddar heaps and crispy onions.
  7. Wait for a commercial break. Place gently in front of the waiting animals. Scream THE RED MAN COMMANDS and release a flurry of tortilla chips in their direction.
  8. Let the flinging and clawing begin.