Reading Fire's Spicy Pork, Pear, and Apple Chili by: Peter Marchetti from Main Street Fire Station



The spicy pork, pear, and apple chili recipe is one of the recipes used by our Reading Fire Department competition chili team. We are the winners of multiple awards at chili contests throughout New England. We are recognized by the International Chili Society (ICS). This recipe is one of the simplest versions and should be easy for people with some basic culinary skills to reproduce. We hope you enjoy it!



  • Olive oil.
  • 4 pounds pork butt, fat trimmed, cut into
  • 1/2-inch cubes.
  • 4 tablespoons Chacheres Creole
  • Seasoning.
  • 1 large Vidalia onion, chopped.
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced.
  • 2 large red bell pepper, seeded and
  • chopped.
  • 2 Hungarian peppers, minced.
  • 2 Jalapeno peppers minced.
  • 1 (28-ounce) can tomato sauce.
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomato.
  • 2 tablespoons beef paste.
  • 4 apples, peeled, cored, and chopped.
  • 4 pears, peeled, cored, and chopped.
  • 2 packets hot chili seasoning.
  • 1 tsp. salt.
  • 1 tsp. fresh ground black pepper.
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar.
  • 11/2 tablespoon cumin.
  • 2 (14-ounce) cans red kidney beans,
  • drained, rinsed.
  • Salt to taste.


  1. Coat pork with Chacheres Creole seasoning and brown over high heat in olive oil.
  2. Reserve pork in a bowl to collect juices.
  3. Add the vegetables, garlic, beef paste, salt and pepper to a stock pot and cook until slightly soft.
  4. Stir in the tomato sauce, diced tomato, and chili seasoning. Bring to a boil.
  5. Add pork and juices. Reduce the temperature and simmer for 45 minutes. Do not boil!
  6. Add the apples, pears, cumin, and brown sugar. Simmer for 30-45 minutes.
  7. Stir in the beans if desired.
  8. Simmer for additional 10 to 15 minutes. Salt to taste.
  9. Note: I use New Mexico hot and California mild ground chili powder but commercial packets will work.


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