Well it looks like we have covered every possible weird thing anyone could think of to put in a pot of chili. Actually, I like and have tried most of the things suggested, but there are a few I havent, but will.
I've a friend that's a professional chef and for a lark at a chili cook off, she made what she called Spam "n Jam chili (grape jam, I believe) . Of course she won. She's won 3 first places plus several 2nd's making it. She uses a variety of fresh and dried chili's, the exact types are known to her alone.
I've a question to those that add pickles to theirs. I'd consider adding Szechuan minced pickles next time. I can't picture any pickles but I haven't tried it and having an open mind, I certainly would if offered a taste. Our local restaurant reviewer downgrades a restaurant when they call a dish by a name that doesn't match what he
considers a classic preparation. Now how could a say, French chef, make authentic American chili? It seems that no two area's are the same and Cincinnati, Green Bay, Southwestern and Texas couldn't be more different, not to mention everyones unique concoction. When the meat and spices are in proper balance, they all can be good