Monday, February 16, 2009

Ancho chili chili

I like chili. I like any kind of chili. I like the Texas chili that is just chilis and beef. I like New Mexico green chilis with pork. I like the midwestern hamburger, beans and tomato soup like substance that we call chili here. Everyone has their favorite. I don't have one. I make it different every time depending on what I am feeling on that day.

So, here I was on a cold day last week looking in my cupboards for some dinner inspiration when I spied a bag of dried ancho chilis. I thought, why not make a midwestern/Texas/whatever chili fusion with ancho?

So, I started with about 10 chilis that were seeded and crumbled up.

I poured some boiling water onto the chilis and left them to soak for a while. For a bit more heat I also added a couple tablespoons of Korean red pepper flakes along with the anchos.

When everything was well hydrated I added about 5 cloves of garlic, salt, pepper and a chopped onion and whirred it up in my blender to make a smooth paste. I added some lemon juice and more water until it was the right sauce like consistency. My blender was almost full to the top.

To season the dish even more I toasted some spices. Here is my favorite mix of cumin seeds, corriander and a few cardamom pods. These were ground up in a coffee grinder.

For the beef I used a round roast and cubed it up into about 3/4 inch cubes.

To make my chili, I started by searing the beef in a hot pan with some salt and pepper for a few minutes, just until it started to get brown on the bottom of the pan. Next went in the ground spices. I then added the chili sauce to the pan and covered it. This was simmered for about three hours until the beef was drop dead tender. To finish the chili I added chopped carrots and a can of kidney beans and cooked it until the carrots were tender.

My chili was served over white steamed rice with a side of 5-minute artisan wheat bread. The ancho flavor was wonderful.


veggie belly said...

Anchos are so flavorful, this dish looks amazing!

dishesdone said...

Looks great, Greg! I love chili! I finally made it with the cubed meat rather than the ground beef. Big difference. Yours looks so good!

Passionate About Baking said...

Thank you for the word of caution Greg. Have now included it in the post. It's always good to be on the safer side of food.Thanks a ton! Have a good day. Cheers Deeba

Kevin said...

That chili is looking tasty!