I’ve got a new learning experience going on over here: I know how to cook, but I’m new to meat. So I’m surrounding myself with new recipes and inspirations, and learning how to cook all sorts of new-to-me omnivorous options!
Around here, we have a few meals that have become staples in our weeknight rotation: Kale Salad with Caesar Dressing, Stir-Fried Noodles with all sorts of veggies in a peanut sauce, and Thai Green Curry over Coconut Rice. Well, I’ve just added a new one with this Spicy Chipotle Chili Con Carne.
This chili has all the elements I love from my standard-for-the-last-20-years Mole Veggie Chili — tomatoes, peppers, cayenne and cocoa powder, plus my new additions of smoky Chipotle peppers, and ground beef. And ohhh the extra depth of flavour is delicious.
I think the outstanding part of this chili comes from what I’m now calling Louise’s Topping — chopped cilantro leaves, green onions, and lemon zest. Louise once topped chili with this magical combination, and served it alongside tortilla chips. Now there is no other way for me. I’m also a big fan of adding grated cheese + sour cream or Greek yogurt.
If you want to add some starch, you can serve it with tortilla chips, over a bed of rice, or over a baked sweet potato. OR ON NACHOS!!!! Oh… I’m going to need to make another pot for next week, I can feel it already.
Spicy Chipotle Chili Con Carne
- 1 lb organic lean ground beef
- 1 Tablespoon bacon grease (or olive oil)
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 red pepper, chopped
- 1 chipotle from a can of chipotles in adobo, chopped
- 1 Tablespoon cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- 1 can tomato paste
- 1 can pinto beans, drained
- 1 can black beans, drained
In a large, heavy-bottomed pot, melt the bacon grease over low heat, and add the garlic and onions. Sweat the onions until they are translucent, then add the red peppers.
Turn the heat up to medium and add the ground beef. Stir everything well, and cook until the meat is browned, about 5 minutes.
Add the cocoa powder, paprika, cayenne, oregano, and sea salt. Stir to incorporate the spices throughout the beef mixture.
Pour in the tomatoes, tomato paste, pinto beans, and black beans. If there isn’t enough liquid to come to the top of the ingredients, top up with water.
Bring the pot to a boil, then turn down to a simmer. Give the pot a stir, and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to make sure nothing sticks to the bottom of the pot.
Turn off the heat and let stand for 10 minutes before serving. I love it with some shredded cheese and Louise’s Topping of cilantro, green onions, and lemon zest. And if you’re a fan of sour cream or Greek yogurt, go wild! Enjoy!