Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Terry Kelly's Chili and Cornbread by Colleen

Hi Barb,

So our friend made Chili on Boxing Day and William loved it. I made it the next day, but did it all in the Le Creuset and then let it cook in the oven for 2 hours at 325 instead of simmering on the stove. I found that after it had sat for a day, it became very thick. Easily solved by adding some water when you reheat.

According to Top Chef: Texas, real Texas Chili does not have beans. Well then I am a real Texan, as I really don't like them in chili or anything else. This recipe is great because it is just the meat and a very spice sauce. I may experiment with adding some tomato next time (feeling a little bad about the lack of veg) or maybe some corn.
I also found a cornbread biscuit recipe (I am not a fan of cornbread by itself) that was easy and went well with the chili. Recipe follows chili.

{Re-reading my email. Seems I am world's pickiest eater. Oh well. Picky eaters need to eat, too.)


Terry Kelly's Chili:
3-4 pounds chuck (shoulder is fine) cut into 1/2 cubes. Okay to leave a little fat, for flavor, but I am pretty finicky about gristle. I actually cut off large pieces of fat and heat them in the pan, then remove before I brown the meat.

Okay: now brown the meat over med-high heat in a couple of Tbsp of vegetable oil. I scoop out with slotted spoon and transfer to a pot with 1.5 to 2.0 qts water plus spices.

About those spices: the chili powder is the main variable; sometimes this amount is just right, other times; well Goldilocks might reject it. Perhaps start with a little less?

6 Tbsp Chili powder
1 Tbsp Cayenne
1 Tbsp Cumin
1 Tbsp Oregano
2 Tbsp Tabasco
3,4,5,6 cloves garlic (just smashed with broadside of knife and dropped in)
2 tsp salt (+/- to taste, but it needs some I find)

Toss it in and partially cover and bring to the gentlest of simmers--more tender if it never quite bubbles--and I like to let it doze like that for 2 hours at least.

Then, 1 cup of corn meal in a small cup, take some of the broth and work it in with a fork (avoids lumps that happen if you dump it in) until smooth and add to the mix to thicken (actually you can do this at any point.)

I like to serve with cornbread and shredded cheddar cheese; some like jack. Also some like to have pinto beans on the side to add; I don't, and consider that a legume stew as opposed to chili, but am not dogmatic.
1 1/4 c. flour
3/4 c. corn meal
1/2 c. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 stick butter, softened
3/4 c. milk
Mix dry ingredients well. Cut in butter with fork. Mix milk in with fork until moistened thoroughly (will be gooey). Drop by tablespoons on sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until light brown.


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