Well, it was the biggest football game of the year—”Super Bowl 57″—and our hometown Eagles team were part of the action, so we wanted to make it an authentic culinary experience, even if it was just the two of us. When we think football, our minds conjure up certain food items that are iconic stalwarts of the game celebration. To us that might mean spicy wings, soft pretzels with mustard, loaded nachos, buffalo chicken dip, bacon-wrapped jalapeño poppers, and of course chili with all the fixins’.
Over the decades we’ve made many a chili recipe with as many variations as there are football fans. This one by Pati Jinich is worth the effort. She is a Mexican chef, TV personality, cookbook author, educator, and food writer. Pati is best known for her James Beard Award-winning and Emmy-nominated public television series Pati’s Mexican Table. So she has some hefty credit backing up her authority on the chili issue.
Chili is a hearty and flavorful crowd-pleaser that’s perfect all winter long, not just on football Sundays. As is typical, we did make a few tweaks. Number one, we used an entire large jalapeño, not just a mere tablespoon’s worth. Secondly, the stew beef was not tender after one hour (no surprise there), so we simmered, uncovered, for another hour before adding the beans. It then takes another 45 minutes to an hour for the beans, covered on low with a gentle simmer, stirring every once in a while.
Alas, our team lost the Super Bowl, but the chili was a clear winner!
- 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil, plus one Tbsp. set aside
- 1 lb. beef stew meat, cubed into 1-inch chunks
- 1 lb. ground pork or beef
- 1 tsp. kosher salt, or more to taste
- 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, or more to taste
- 1 large white onion, chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 Tbsp. chopped jalapeño, seeding optional
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1/2 tsp. paprika
- 1 tsp. chili powder, such as ancho or chipotle chili powder
- 1 Tbsp. chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, or more to taste
- 1/2 tsp. cumin
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
- 1 28-oz. can crushed tomatoes
- 1 Tbsp. dark brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp. distilled white vinegar
- 4 cups beef stock
- 2 15-oz. cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- Sour cream
- Chopped fresh cilantro
- Shredded cheddar cheese
- Tortilla chips
- Green onions, sliced thin
- In a Dutch oven or heavy bottom casserole, heat 3 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add the beef, and begin to brown on all sides. After 2 to 3 minutes, add the ground meat, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and let it brown along with the cubed meat for another 5 to 6 minutes. The juices of the ground meat should have come out and then dry out. Stir as the meat browns. Remove meat from pot, set aside.
- Make room in the center of the pan, add the extra tablespoon of oil and add the onions and peppers, cook for 5 more minutes or until they begin to soften.
- In the casserole again, add the garlic, red pepper flakes, cayenne, paprika, chili powder, chipotle sauce, cumin, oregano, stir well.
- Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar and vinegar, mix well and cook for 3 to 4 minutes stirring a couple times. The tomato paste should have dissolved and the sauce thickened a bit.
- Pour in the beef stock and once it comes to a strong simmer, reduce heat to medium. Add the browned meat back into the pot, cover and cook for another hour.
- Next, add the beans and stir. Lower the heat to medium-low, it should have a low steady simmer, and cook uncovered for 45 minutes to an hour, stirring every once in awhile.
- Serve the chili in bowls and let your guests garnish with sour cream, cilantro, shredded cheddar cheese, tortilla chips and green onions.
Original recipe by Pati Jinich