Sunday, November 1, 2009

Texas Chili

I found this recipe in the October 09 edition of Martha Stewart Living and I have been dying to make it. I decided there was no better way to welcome November and the upcoming chilly weather than with a bowl of homemade chili. I guess I should start by saying that I love chili but have never attempted to make it. This recipe was delicious and the beef was so tender.  It's a bit time consuming with all the chopping, soaking and seeding, but the results are definitely worth all of the hard work. Not to mention, we now have enough leftovers for the next few days. Christian and I both agreed that this will be made again. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Courtesy of Martha Stewart Living

8 whole dried chilis (5 ancho and 3 guajillo , or all ancho)
3 tablespoons of safflower oil, eyeball ( I used olive oil)
3 lbs trimmed beef chuck, cut into cubes, 1/2 inch or smaller
2 large onions, coarsely chopped
7-8 cloves of garlic, minced
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced
2 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin ( i used quite a bit)
1 1/2 dried oregano (i used quite a bit)
1 28 oz can of whole peeled tomatoes, pureed with their juice (i used crushed)
4 cups of water
water for soaking chilis
2-3 teaspoons of white vinegar
coarse salt and pepper to taste
(i served over rice but this is optional)

Toast dried chiles in a dry skillet over medium-high heat until fragrant and blistered, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove stem and seeds; discard. Transfer chiles to a large measuring cup or bowl, and cover with hot water. Keep chiles submerged with a small bowl, and let soak for 30 minutes. Remove from water, and puree in a blender with 1/2 cup soaking liquid.

Heat a large heavy pot over high heat. Add 2 tablespoons oil. Season beef with 2 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Brown beef in batches, adding more oil as needed, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a plate.Add remaining tablespoon oil, the onions, garlic, and minced chiles to pot, and cook over medium-high heat until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. (If the pan gets too dark, add a little water, and scrape up browned bits with a wooden spoon to deglaze.) Add cumin and oregano, and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute.  (forgot to take picture of beef)


Stir in browned beef and chile puree. Add tomato puree, water, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer gently, partially covered, until meat is very tender and juices are thick, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. (Check pot once an hour for excessive evaporation; if chili seems dry, add a little water.) Season chili with salt, and stir in vinegar.