Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Sunday Chilli

Chilli is great in the winter because it is warm, hearty, delicious, and easy to make for a crowd.  It was an obvious choice this past weekend for Sunday football.  We always wing it when we're making chilli, just using whatever we have on hand and trying out new ideas here and there.  This one has a few unique flavors - a combination of ground lamb and ground beef, chipotles in adobo, and brewed coffee.  It adds complex flavor to the chilli without any one ingredient standing out more than the others.  The recipe made about 10 servings and we had it with rice to mellow out the spiciness.  It was so good that I think this chilli recipe is here to stay!
2 T vegetable oil
1 lb ground beef
1 lb ground chilli
1 large onion, diced
1 large green bell pepper, diced
2 jalapenos (including seeds if you want it spicier), finely diced
2 chipotles in adobo sauce, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T hot (or regular) chile powder
1 t ground cumin
1 t ground coriander 
1/2 t smoked paprika
1 T ground Mexican oregano 
1 28 oz can of crushed tomatoes
1 cup strongly brewed coffee
4-5 cups chicken broth
1 14 oz can of diced tomatoes
1 14 oz can red kidney beans
1 14 oz can black beans
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high.  Brown meat, breaking it up as it cooks.  Add 1 teaspoon kosher salt and some freshly ground black pepper to the meat as it cooks. 
When the meat is done browning, drain it into a bowl.  Spoon out some of the remaining fat until there is only about 3 T remaining in the pot.  Over medium heat, saute the onion, bell pepper, and jalapeno for about 8-10 minutes or until softened.  Sprinkle some salt and pepper in as the vegetables cook.  Add the garlic, chipotles in adobo, and spices/herbs and cook 2 minutes longer.

Add the meat back into the pot.  Pour in the crushed tomatoes, coffee, chicken broth, and diced tomatoes.  Drain the beans and add them to the pot and stir well to combine.  Simmer for at least 30 minutes or for several hours covered.  If you want to reduce the consistency of the chilli, simmer it with the top off until it is as thick as you like.  

Taste it to see if you need to add more salt and pepper.  Serve over rice (optional) with sour cream and grated cheddar cheese.  Yum!

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