Layer in your slow cooker: apple, applesauce, & pork. Sprinkle with cinnamon to taste, then splash in a bit of beer/stock. If you like an especially sweet chili you can sprinkle with brown sugar, 1 Tbsp per half pound of meat. Turn slow cooker on high for an hour or two, then back down to low/warm until the rest of the cooking is done. [If doing stovetop, I just put the whole mess in a small saucepan on the very lowest setting on the back of the stove for a couple hours.]
Preheat oven to 450F.
In a Dutch oven or large saucepan, cook bacon. When it's crispy, remove, drain on paper towels, & set aside. Begin to caramelize the onions in the bacon fat, adding salt and additional oil if needed.
While the onions are caramelizing, slice the tomatoes and peppers. Toss them in a little olive oil/salt/pepper. Place cut-side down on a cooling rack over a tinfoiled sheet pan. Also, cut the tops off the garlic with a sharp knife & drizzle with olive oil. Wrap up the garlic in a little foil packet. Roast in the oven for 45 mins to an hour until the tomatoes & pepper are nicely charred & the garlic is roasted.
When the tomatoes & peppers are cool enough to touch, chop roughly and set aside, making sure to get the juice along with the tomatoes. Your onions should be caramelized by now as well.
Extract the roasted garlic cloves and mash well with dried ground chiles, cumin, and minced chipotle pepper. Add enough beer to form a thick paste. [I put the whole thing in a blender with the caramelized onions because of my family's aversion to onion pieces.]
Deglaze the be-onioned dutch oven, if needed. Add the garlic/spice paste as well as the celery, then cook for a couple minutes until fragrant. Add the tomato paste & enough beer to barely cover. Stir well to incorporate, turn the heat down, & let simmer gently for 10 minutes.
Add the roasted tomato, pepper, and the beans. If needed, pour in more beer/stock until the liquid level covers. Drop in the bay leaves. Bring the whole thing to a boil, then back down to a simmer. Simmer until flavors are nicely blended, maybe an hour. Remove the bay leaves.
Shred the pork in the slow cooker, then stir the pork & apple mixture into the beans along with the reserved bacon. Salt & pepper to taste, then serve.
This is a half recipe because I generally don't need to make chili for a crowd, but even a half recipe is a lot. You might think that a crock pot for such a tiny bit of meat is silly, and you're probably right. Feel free to change it up to do it all on the stovetop or whatever.
I usually use dried beans, soaked & cooked.
Upping the spice factor is easy -- add more chipotles, or roast some hot peppers with the sweet.
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|Serving Size: 1 Serving (396g)|
|Recipe Makes: 8 Servings|
|Calories from Fat: 95 (37%)|
|Amt Per Serving||% DV|
|Total Fat 10.5g||14 %|
|Saturated Fat 3.1g||15 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 4.9g|
|Polyunsanturated Fat 1.4g|
|Cholesterol 46.3mg||14 %|
|Sodium 446.1mg||15 %|
|Potassium 768.5mg||20 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 20.7g||6 %|
|Dietary Fiber 4.9g||20 %|
|Sugars, other 15.8g|
|Protein 16.3g||23 %|
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Calories per serving: 259
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