Myth Museum founder makes monster jar of black bean chili



Northerners know John Burroughs as the director who ran the Rogers Historical Museum into its new space in the iconic Hailey Ford building on South Second Street. But since moving to the St. Louis area, Burroughs has taken on something bigger – and much, much stranger. He is the co-founder of the World Myth Museum, intended to offer a “comprehensive exploration of myths and legends” such as Sasquatch, the German Kobold and the Japanese Kappa.

“We want to inspire people to understand how culture has defined legends and the process of myth-making and storytelling,” Burroughs said in a May 30 article in this newspaper. “We want to inspire people to be curious, and we want to have conversations with our visitors about the legends they may have known. And we want to inspire people to appreciate all the stories that try to explain the world around us. . “

And, he adds, “the strength of our exhibits will lie in the realistic sculptures” created by his partner, the extraordinary artist Kendall Hart, “which will bring our visitors face to face with legends.”

“We’re making great strides forward at the World Myth Museum,” updates Burroughs. “Thanks to the support of our initial investors, we have moved beyond our home office in Farmington, Missouri, and are in the process of moving to a new studio space where we can focus on sculpting creatures and making plans. museum.Once we have the studio open and after completing the Arkansas Gowrow and the Missouri Monster, we will add other creatures to our exhibits such as the chupacabra.

“In addition to our planning and development work, we are scheduling time for appearances in Missouri, southern Illinois and western Kentucky,” he adds, in addition to working with Northwest Arkansas. to present traveling exhibitions here in 2022.

“Part of this planning is focusing on working with local schools to deliver classroom programs,” he explains. “In addition to the cultural heritage and storytelling related to the content of the museum’s mythology and cryptozoology, there is a strong component of arts education and STEM related to our use of technology to digitally sculpt and produce sculptures.

“It will be a busy year in 2022, and we look forward to connecting with the Northwest Arkansas community during this next phase of the museum.”

When we asked our regional celebrities to submit their favorite “local flavors” – defined as comfort food in uncomfortable times – Burroughs was much less elusive than Bigfoot but didn’t leave out the unusual. He had an immediate choice: black bean and sausage chili with hominy.

“I don’t have a name for that,” he said. “I call it chili, some call it weird, everyone who tries it calls it good. You know how it is, chili is the subject of debate. But as an old bachelor, I like to have one. saucepan on the fire when I come in to meetings or work on the farm.

“Adding hominy makes it different,” he adds. “It gives it a great corn / masa flavor and an interesting texture. If people try it, it’s a good way to enjoy hominy. It seems people have generally lost their appreciation for it,” [but] it’s something that I have always enjoyed. “

Black Bean and Sausage Chili

1 can of black beans

1 can of diced tomatoes

1 can of yellow hominy

1 medium onion

1/2 pound of pork sausage

Chili powder to taste

Lightly brown the sausage and drain. Add the diced onion to the sausage and continue cooking until the onions become translucent. Add the black beans, tomatoes and hominy. (It is best to drain the hominy. The hominy liquid is too much. It is better drained because it mixes more instead of overpowering the chili.) Add chili powder to taste and bring to a boil for two minutes, reduce heat and simmer for about an hour or more.

“The nice thing about this recipe is that it’s easily expandable,” Burroughs explains. “I have found the black beans, sausage, and hominy to be the perfect combination for my taste. Adding other beans with black beans like pintos and kidney throws it, and the unique flavor of the hominy comes along. loses. I think you get a deeper flavor when the onions are cooked with the sausage before adding the liquids. It is best to simmer long enough for it to thicken. Also, the pork sausage brings a lot of flavor. seasoning in addition to the chili powder, so there is no need to add other seasonings unless you want to. “

Send your “famous cooks” suggestions to [email protected]

It’s not John Burroughs. It is one of the most recent life-size sculptures of the World Myth Museum, a German Kobold. (Courtesy photo / Museum of World Myths)

John Burroughs made a pot of his black bean and sausage chili just for the readers of Local Flavors.  Unfortunately, he now lives in the St. Louis area.  (Courtesy photo / John Burroughs)

John Burroughs made a pot of his black bean and sausage chili just for the readers of Local Flavors. Unfortunately, he now lives in the St. Louis area. (Courtesy photo / John Burroughs)

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Museum of World Myths

To learn more about the World Myth Museum, visit

Email John Burroughs at [email protected]

Email Kendall Hart at [email protected]

Read our May 2021 story here:


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