Chilli Con Carne

chilliconcarne_with_seasoningmix
Photo credit: Santa Maria World

 

Most of the Mexican dishes that you have been consuming most of your life are not actually authentically Mexican food. What we think of as Mexican food is rooted in Texas, Arizona and New Mexico culture known as Tejano. These types of meals happen to be very kid friendly as well as absolutely delicious for adults. Scrumptious meals such as chimichangas, nachos, fajitas guacamole and chili were developed in the southwestern states of the US and the northern border areas of Mexico. What distinguishes this geographical cuisine of food from types of recipes that are found further to the south in Mexico is that there is a heavy use of various cheeses. Also another main feature is the selection of spices, which are chili powder and cumin.

Chili peppers contain the chemical capsaicin. This chemical is what gives the various chili peppers the distinctive pungency, which will produce mild spice flavor to an intensely hot flavor that will seem like your pallet is on fire when consumed. It is well known in the medical field that various types of peppers are good for your health and help to fight cancer.

These delicious recipes were originally made strictly with beef, due to the fact that the Southwest was primarily ranch country. Beef was a product that was in abundance and relatively affordable as compared to other regions of the northern hemisphere. However, in our modern times versions of the style of cuisine have involved to other meats such as chicken and fish.

One of the premier South Western dishes that have become an American icon is chili, which is a various combination of cuts of beef and a wide variety of chilies combined with other types of vegetables such as beans and corn. This is all added according to taste. However the base recipe of real chili-con-carne is chili and lots of beef.

Ingredients

  • 3 whole fresh green chilies with seeds
  • 4 Serrano chilies (can substitute with powder)
  • 4 Cayenne chilies (can substitute with powder)
  • 10 Rome tomatoes
  • 4 pounds beef chuck steak
  • Himalayan sea salt and black pepper (to taste)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

Directions:

Gather together all of the chilies, 5 tomatoes and onion to liquefy them in a blender till you have a smooth concoction. Then add them to the pot.

Chuck steaks work well with chili, because they are inexpensive cuts of meat and once they cook they will be so tender and actually melt in your mouth. Cut it into sections between 1 and 2 inches. When you’re done add to the pot.

Add the spices and any additional spices that you prefer, I would suggest oregano or garlic. Also dice your remaining 5 tomatoes. You may also wish to add black beans or pinto beans as well as corn.

Once you have added all of these components into a pot, cook with medium heat. Always remember to stir the chili frequently. This should take approximately 2.5 to 3 hours. Many people like to bake their chili in the oven and add a layer of cornbread batter on top. Preparing the chili in this matter would require you to have the oven set on 250°.

Once this process is complete, you can serve it up and top it off with cheese, sour cream and maybe even more hot sauce (Texas Pete is my favorite) according to your particular taste. The great thing about a meal like this is that when you reheated the next day it tastes even better.

Feel free to substitute and mix and match any combination of chilies or peppers such as habanero, padilla jalapeno, guajillo, anaheim, or yellow, red, green or orange bell peppers.

Leave a comment and let me know what you think!

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