Chili con carne, or chili with meat, is one of those American dishes that everyone has a recipe for. And as many recipes there are for this stew, so are the opinions as to what ingredients should be included or excluded. Beans no beans, what type of beans, bell peppers no bell peppers, tomatoes no tomatoes, what type of chili, and what the stew should be served with, are just a few of the things people disagree on. Every year around the country there are hundreds, if not thousands, of chili cook-offs where contestants can voice their opinions as to what the best and most authentic way of cooking the chili is.
I’m not a chili purest and in fact know very little about it. But what I do know is that the general chili recipe that so many people know, is not a Mexican dish. In fact it is claimed by Texas as their national dish. I did a little research and found that what is considered authentic Texas style chili resembles more authentic Mexican cooking then the other versions.
This yummyliscious chili is Tasty Trix’s texas red chili. Notice how different it looks than mine? Texas chili does not include beans, instead of a chili spice mixture a variety of dried chiles and spices are prepared for the base, and tomatoes are never used. Trixie wrote a great article about Texas chili and it’s one I highly suggest you read to find out how you too can make it like in her mouthwatering photo.
Now I know you probably already have a great chili recipe that you’re loyal too. The recipe I’m sharing today is the one I’m loyal to. For some reason I crave chili in the summer time and it’s when I make it the most, the other time of the year it hardly makes an appearance on our table. I love to eat a bowl of chili with either corn bread or saltine crackers. Saltines are hard to come by here so I usually go the cornbread route. My husband on the other hand loves to eat his chili with homemade flour tortillas. But this recipe also works great for chili cheese dogs and chili cheese fries. Some times I make a double batch so one night we can eat a bowl and the next chili dogs — so yummy!
- 1 tbsp ground cummin seed
- 1 tbsp sweet Paprika
- 1 tbsp granulated garlic
- ½ tbsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp. ground black pepper
- 2 tsp cayenne pepper, adjust to taste
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 8 garlic cloves, minced
- 300 grams lean beef, cut into bite size pieces
- 1 small green bell pepper
- 1 can kidney or pinto beans, or 1 cup home cooked
- 1 can of stewed tomatoes
- 4 cups or 1 liter beef broth, low sodium & no MSG
- 1.5 tsp sea salt
- ¼ cup chili spice mixture
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tbsp olive or vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp fine corn flour
- 2 tbsp all purpose wheat flour
- water or broth from the chili
- Mix all of the spices in the chili spice mixture list. Drain the beans and rinse. Heat the oil and saute the onion until soft and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the beef and cook through. Stir in the chili spice mixture, sea salt, bay leaf and pepper, mixing thoroughly until all the ingredients are well combined. Add the drained kidney beans, bell pepper, stewed tomatoes and beef broth. Cover and simmer until the meat is tender, it should take about 45 minutes. After this time taste and adjust the seasoning if desired. I usually add a bit more cumin and maybe some granulated garlic or cayenne -- adjust it to your taste.
- It is best to allow the chili to simmer for a long time as this helps combine all of the flavours and makes for a better tasting dish. I tend to simmer for at least 2 hours, sometimes I refrigerate it overnight and cook for another hour the next day. Depending on how liquidy or dry the stew is I will add more broth.
- About 10 minutes before serving chili prepare the thickner. In a small bowl combine the flours and add a bit of broth from the chili or water, mix into a thick and lump free paste. Add it to the chili, stir and allow to simmer for 10 minutes.
- This chili freezes well.
This may not be a fancy or gourmet meal but is sure makes a hearty, simple dinner that is good for the soul. If you have any left overs you can either freeze or refrigerate and enjoy the next couple of days.
How do you like to eat your chili?
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