Sundays beg for easy recipes that allow me to be lazy or to focus on other things. Unfortunately I can’t be 100% lazy today because I have to do some work before another hectic week starts, but it feels good to have dinner in the Dutch oven ready until whenever we are. Today that’s chili con todo – that would be chili with everything: beef, beans, and tomato. It is an especially comforting meal in this rainy and windy weekend. Right after Easter, we have been assaulted by a cold front that doesn’t want to end its Caribbean vacation.
I do not buy ground beef at the grocery store. My Mom always would get beef stew from the supermarket shelves, and take it to the meat counter to have it ground there. That habit stuck with me and I’m grateful for it, especially these days when Pink Slime was all over the news.
This chili is spicy for my taste (not for Eduardo, who flaunted the bottle of Melinda chipotle hot sauce), so adjust the chipotle amounts to your liking.
Chili con Todo
- 1 poblano pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon chipotle flakes
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 1/2 pounds beef stew chunks, ground
- 1 onion
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 teaspoon chipotle
- 1 teaspoon adobo sauce from chipotle
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 ounce bittersweet chocolate
- 1 14oz can pink beans, undrained (can substitute with red or pinto)
- 2 14 oz cans diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1/2 cup of beer (used a light pale lager, but darker is better)
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
In a toaster over or over a gas burner, roast the poblano until the skin is charred. Allow it to cool down and peel and discard the skin, stem, and seeds.
In a Dutch oven, heat the a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the chipotle flakes and allow the flakes to flavor and color the oil. Add the ground beef, and season it with salt and pepper. Cook the beef over medium heat until it is browned. Drain as much fat as you would like before continuing.
While the beef browns, chop the onion in the food processor and add after draining out the fat. While the onions cook with the beef, combine in the food processor the roasted poblano, garlic, chipotle, and adobo sauce. Pulse together until a paste is formed and there are no large chunks of garlic. Add this mixture to the beef and cook for two to three minutes. Season with cumin. Add the undrained beans and tomatoes, chocolate, beer, and Worcestershire sauce. Allow to simmer for at least an hour, adjusting the salt and pepper to taste.
The Lagniappe – Garnishes to add to taste
- Crushed toasted tortillas
- Monterrey-Jack cheese
- Greek yogurt or sour cream