BEEF AND DARK BEER CHILI

Southern cooking scares me. Well, more like mountains of fried chicken. Mostly because I’m not used to cooking with 5 sticks of butter at a time, but I found a good entry dish – chili. I followed a recipe, but I liked that I could choose certain ingredients that I liked better, like lima beans instead of kidney beans. I also like that it’s a very mild recipe, but if you want, you can add some extra spice for a tingly deep flavor. Because of my soup learning curve, I thought this would take a couple of times to perfect, but I have to say it’s some of the best chile I’ve tasted. (I will say I haven’t had too many chilis in my life and It’s not as good as our local Texas BBQ joint’s, but I digress…)

So, without further ado, here is the awesome recipe from bon appetit:

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INGREDIENTS

1 1/2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
5 pounds ground chuck
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 1/2 pounds onions, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 pounds red bell peppers, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 1/2 pounds yellow bell peppers, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 large jalapeño chiles with seeds, chopped (about 1/3 cup)
7 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons (packed) minced canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce*
2 28-ounce cans crushed tomatoes with added puree
2 15-ounce cans kidney beans, drained
1 12-ounce bottle dark beer (such as stout)
Sour cream
Chopped green onions
Coarsely grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese

Toast cumin and coriander in skillet over medium heat until darker and beginning to smoke, about 4 minutes. Cool.

Sauté beef in heavy large pot over medium-high heat until no longer pink, breaking up with spoon, about 8 minutes. Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, all bell peppers, and jalapeños. Sauté until vegetables begin to soften, about 15 minutes. Add mixture to pot with meat. Mix in toasted spices, chili powder, and chipotle chiles. Add crushed tomatoes, beans, and beer. Bring chili to boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes, stirring often. Season with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD Can be made ahead. Cool slightly. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated up to 2 days (or freeze up to 1 month). Rewarm over medium-low heat.

Ladle chili into bowls. Serve with sour cream, green onions, and cheese.

I split the recipe in half because there are only 2 of us, but use your best judgement. For example, it called for a whole jalapeño, but I put in half because I can’t eat it if it’s too spicy, and you can always add more later. I added salt at the end and it tasted a little salty so I poured the rest of the beer in and it was perfect. Certain things I changed – I didn’t put bell peppers in, I used more than 2 tbsp of the chipotle in adobo, I used lima instead of kidney beans, and I used Dos Equis beer.

Stay thirsty, my food-lover friends!

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