To make a dish with chili and rice, it doesn’t matter what kind of chili you use and it doesn’t matter what kind of beans you use (if you use beans). It doesn’t even matter what kind of rice you use. As long as it’s called “chili”, you can put it on top of some cooked rice and make a meal out of it. It should be obvious, but you can’t use uncooked rice, even while preparing your dish. I prefer chili with beans, even if it does make me flatulate like crazy. There are ways around the flatulence issue, so you should never let that be the one thing that holds you back from eating beans.
I ate rice regularly when I lived in Hawaii in the early 1970s, but my introduction to chili and rice came later. It was at the little diner in the bowling alley at MCRD, San Diego, California in 1979. That’s where I went to boot camp and where I was stationed after my class A school.
I don’t know if that diner cooked its own chili or if it was pulled out of can. All I know is it tasted like canned chili, and that’s the best way I can describe it. I know they cooked the rice because you just can’t get cooked rice from a can, not like that.
Anyway, it was cheap and it did the job of filling me up when I was hungry. That happened far too often and it was usually because I forgot to eat dinner. Back in those days, I was underweight. Unlike now, when I’m overweight. Of course, I was 18-20 back then and now I’m in my 50s.
I don’t believe I had any chili and rice at all between the date I left there in 1981 and some date when my younger son was old enough to tell me he liked it. I’m guessing, but I think it was after 1990.
I don’t eat chili and rice very often now, but I get a craving for it once in a while.
I don’t really care whether it has beans in it or not, but I like the fact that beans are high in protein and potassium. If I don’t get enough potassium every day, I get foot cramps when I sleep.
Since it’s just me and the wife in this small apartment (temporary, I assure you), I don’t worry about letting the gas loose if the beans affect me that way. They don’t always bother me – it depends on how much I’ve eaten I’m sure. If they start bothering me, I’ll use an old trick – stirring in a teaspoon of baking powder while heating them up.
I won’t let a little thing (depends on perspective, I suppose) like flatulence keep me away from chili and rice.
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