Recipe: Chili con Carne

There is so much excitement about Hal’s Kitchen’s new, private facility in North Buckhead, but our hearts are with Texas…

The images and stories are devastating, but we know Texans are strong, neighborly, and hospitable. Without a doubt they will face the challenges ahead of them with courage. From culinary trend setting Austin to the seafood of Corpus Christi, I am reminded of the diversity of Texas’ people, and their ability to blend cultures together.

To help those affected by the devastation in Texas from Hurricane Harvey, we will be doing our part by making a donation to the Red Cross.

In the meantime, let’s keep Texas in our hearts and minds with one of their iconic dishes, Chili con Carne.

Ingredients:

  • 3 whole dried New Mexico chilies, stems and seeds removed
  • 2 small hot dried chilies Arbol,, stems and seeds removed
  • 3 whole dried chilies like Ancho, Mulatto, Negro, or Pasilla, stems and seeds removed
  • 2 whole Chipotle chilies canned in adobo sauce, plus 2 tablespoons sauce
  • 2 quarts low sodium chicken broth
  • 4 pounds beef chuck, trimmed of excess gristle and fat, cut into thick steaks
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, finely diced
  • 4 medium cloves garlic, finely diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons fine cornmeal
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

 

Instructions:

  1. Add dried chiles to large heavy-bottomed Dutch oven or stock pot and cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until slightly darkened with intense, roasted aroma, 2 to 5 minutes. Watch carefully so they do not burn, and do not allow them to smoke.
  2. Remove chiles to small bowl and set aside. Transfer to a 2-quart sauce pot.
  3. Add half of chicken broth and chipotle chilies, and cook until gently simmering, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside for 5 minutes.
  4. Transfer chilies and liquid to blender and blend, starting on the lowest possible setting and gradually increasing speed to high (make sure to hold the lid down with a clean kitchen towel or a potholder to prevent it from blowing out). Blend until smooth, about 1 minute.
  5. Season chuck steaks generously with salt and pepper. Heat oil in the base of a Dutch oven over high heat until just starting to smoke.
  6. Add half of beef chuck in a single layer and cook without moving until deeply browned, about 6 minutes.
  7. Flip steaks and brown second side, 3 to 4 minutes longer. Transfer steaks to a cutting board.
  8. When cool enough to handle, cut seared steaks and raw steaks into 1 1/2- to 2-inch chunks.
  9. Return Dutch oven to heat. Add onions and cook, stirring frequently until translucent and softened, about 2 minutes.
  10. Add garlic, cinnamon, cumin, allspice, and oregano, and cook, stirring constantly until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  11. Add all meat back to pan along with chili puree and remaining quart chicken broth. Stir to combine.
  12. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce to a simmer, cover, leaving lid just barely ajar and cook, stirring occasionally until meat is completely tender, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Alternatively, stew can be cooked in a 200° to 250°F oven with the lid of the Dutch oven slightly ajar.
  13. Stir in cornmeal and vinegar. Add hot sauce to taste. Season to taste with salt
  14. For best results, allow chili to cool and store in the refrigerator at least overnight and up to five days. Reheat the next day to serve.
  15. Serve, garnished with cilantro, chopped onions, scallions, grated cheese, avocado, and warm tortillas as desired.