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Austin Reno Red Texas Chili

    5 lbs H-E-B brand Beef Chuck for Chili
    2 medium purple onions
    3 teaspoons Adams brand Ground Cumin
    5-8 heaping tablespoons Adams brand Chili Powder
    3 cloves of garlic, pressed
    5-15 Bolner's Fiesta brand Ancho Chili pods
    1 teaspoon Adams brand Oregano in 1 cup of water ("tea")
    Black pepper

    These specific brands are optional but I chose to use Central Texas
    ingredients such as Austin-based Adams Spices. This recipe feeds 6-8.

    Remove stems and seeds from chili pods. (To accomodate my kids I
    stopped at 5 chili pods. For hotter chili, add more peppers and/or more
    chili powder.)

    Place chili pods in saucepan, cover with water, and simmer for about 30
    minutes.

    Mash chili pods through a sieve to remove membrane or scrape the pulp
    from the skins with a spoon. Make a paste of the pulp. DO NOT THROW
    OUT THE WATER. Hold for later.

    Chop onions. I used purple onions because I already had them on hand,
    but use your favorite variety. (Note: Some purists oppose the use of
    onions in "real Texas chili.")
    Make a "tea" of the oregano leaves by brewing in 1 cup of water. Set
    aside. (Other recipes use beer instead of water.)

    Brown meat 1 pound at a time, seasoning with black pepper. Brown
    onions along with the meat. Use slotted spoon to remove meat and
    onions to your chili cooking pot as it browns.

    To your browned meat and onions add the cumin, chili powder, and
    3 cloves of pressed garlic.

    Don't have a handy-dandy garlic press? Crush your garlic cloves with
    the flat side of a butcher's knife then chop the crushed garlic very fine.

    Cook mixture for a full 10 minutes, adding a small amount of the
    reserved chili pepper water. Stir constantly so it doesn't burn or stick.
    This step cooks the spices into the meat.
    Stir in the chili paste and about half of the Oregano "tea" and cook over
    low heat for about 1.5 hours.
    Add the remaining Oregano "tea" and pepper water while the chili
    simmers, stirring occasionally.
    Cooking Tip: At this point you might want to split the recipe into two
    pots then add additional chili paste/chili powder to one pot, leaving
    the other pot as is for those who prefer a milder chili.

    Serve over chunks of Mexican cornbread (I used a mix but in true
    Southern tradition I start by putting my greased iron skillet in the
    oven to heat).


    Recipe by Jacci Howard Bear



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