Sunday, 10 October 2010

Beef chili

It was my birthday earlier this week, and to celebrate I had invited my friends over to our flat. I love having people around and cook for them. I wanted to make something autumnal and that I could leave on the stove with a minimum of attention so I decided to make a massive pot of chili. The picture was taken quite late in the evening, but the 10L pot was completely full at the start of it, and the following morning completely empty. Lucky that, because I thought when I was making it that I might end up eating chili for the next 6 months.... I have a tendency to cook way too much food, it's like I have a perpetual fear of anyone leaving my house hungry. I think this trait is directly passed down from my mum and gran, my family cooks a lot and really do show their love through food.

This recipe is for 15-20 people, but you can easily just divide it and make a smaller batch. The addition of coffee, cocoa powder and cinnamon gives the chili a complex and deep flavour. I made it the night before the party, it needs a good 4-5 hours on the stove or in the oven on low heat. The day after you slowly heat it up again and add the beans and maybe some additional red wine or spices. It's hot and full of flavours, I served it with sour cream and bread but you can of course also serve it with rice.

Beef chili (15-20 portions)
3 kg of casserole/stewing beef, cut in 2 x 2 cm chunks
6 cans of chopped tomatoes
1 bottle of red wine
6 yellow onions, chopped
6 peppers, chopped
250 g chorizo, thinly sliced
600 g smoked bacon, chopped
15 garlic cloves, finely chopped
8 cans of butter or cannellini beans
10 bay leaves
2 tbsp mild chili powder
1 tbsp chili flakes
1 tbsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp coriander
1 tbsp black pepper
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tbsp cinnamon
2 tbsp oregano
0.5 dl sugar
0.5 dl apple cider vinegar, or use red vinegar or balsamic vinegar
2 cubes with beef stock
1 dl strong coffee

Start by browning the meat in batches, lightly season it with salt and pepper, and add to the pot.

Saute onions, peppers, and garlic and add to the pot.

Fry the bacon and add to the pot.

Add the chorizo, tomatoes, red wine, the beef stock, sugar, vinegar, coffee. Add water if necessary.

Cook at low temperature on the stove or in the oven, it takes up to 4-5 h for the meat to become tender and the flavours to develop.

It the chili is too hot, try adding more sugar and adding some more wine or vinegar. Usually it will become more mellow by day two as the flavours develop.

The next day, heat it up on low temperature and add the beans. If you like, add 2 dl red wine too. Let cook for another hour on low heat, taste it and add some more salt/pepper/sugar if necessary.

What could be better than some cool electro to go with that hot chili? Here's Robert Svensson's The beat

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