Ingredients

1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped bell pepper
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon chili powder or Cajun seasoning
? teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled
1 pound lean ground beef
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (28-ounce)can crushed tomatoes in puree
Salt and pepper to taste
3 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro

Directions

1. In 2 1/2-quart microwave-safe casserole, combine onion, bell pepper, garlic, olive oil, chili powder or Cajun seasoning, oregano. Stir to combine. Cover. Microwave on High for 3 minutes, stirring once.
2. Add beef; stir to break up the pieces. Cover. Microwave on High, stirring once, for 5 minutes.
3. Add beans, tomatoes and salt and pepper to taste. Cover. Microwave on High, stirring twice, for 8 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve.

This recipe makes relatively mild chili. To add some heat, increase the amount of chili powder, or add cayenne pepper or chopped jalapeno peppers to taste. And don't neglect chili's appeal as a topping for hamburgers and hot dogs, or as a filling in soft rolls or omelets.

Quick Southwestern Chili
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