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Super Bowl Recipes: Halftime Chili Is Better With Bacon, Whiskey

For those of us stationed in Chicago, Super Bowl XLVI doesn't feature too much local intrigue. Instead, Sunday will be about the parties, which are inevitably about the food. A group of my friends is using the game as an excuse to throw our second annual "Chili Con Carnival", a tournament-style chili cooking competition where everyone's a winner.

Last year, I did a Google search for chili recipes and came across a gem: FamousChiliRecipes.com's Halftime blend. Here's the basic ingredients:

3 Tablespoons olive oil
• 1 1/2 cups chopped onion
• 8 large garlic cloves, chopped
• 2 pounds ground chuck (you can also substitute ground chicken or ground turkey)
• 1 envelope taco seasoning or 1/4 cup taco seasoning
• 1 teaspoon dried basil
• 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
• 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
• 1 15oz can tomato sauce
• 3 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth
• 1 6oz can tomato paste
• 2 15 to 16oz cans of kidney beans (drained)

As someone who ranks around a two out of 10 in terms of cooking ability, I can reliably tell you this is super easy. So far as "special" ingredients go? Last year, we used whiskey and bacon bits. Because, duh, those are the two best things.