Saturday, March 16, 2013

Rick's "Game Day" Chili

As football fills the TV screens across the land, I can’t think of anything that goes better with the game than a good bowl of spicy chili and a cold beer.  I have been refining this chili recipe for a long time, and I think it hits all the high notes; meaty, spicy, tangy, etc.  I dice a whole beef and pork roast to make my chili, but you can use ground meats if you wish..  Adding the spicy pork sausage just rounds out the flavors.  One of the secrets of competition chili is double ground spice. That is, the chef will run all his spices through a spice grinder to get the finest size particles possible. This releases the flavors faster and more completely.  Cumin, the spice that gives chili its distinctive aroma, comes in either powdered form or in seed form. I like to use the whole seeds, toast them in a skillet, and then grind them for a more pungent flavor and aroma.  Also, don’t ever cook beans in your chili! The starch released from the beans will dull all the flavors, so cook them separately and add them to each bowl at serving time.  Serve the chili with grated cheddar cheese, a dollop of sour cream and corn chips.  Enjoy!


2 lbs beef chuck roast, 3/8” dice for chili
1 lb pork roast, 3/8” dice for chili
½ lb pork sausage
1/2 bottle of beer (other half reserved for the cook)
1 (8 ounce) can Hunt’s tomato sauce
2 cans Rotel “Original” diced tomatoes and green chiles
1 cup Swanson beef broth
1/2 cup water
2 teaspoons paprika
4 teaspoons cumin
1 tablespoon dried onion flakes
1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tsp salt
2 bay leaves
1/2 cup chili powder (I use Mexene brand, available at
1 tablespoon ground unsweetened chocolate
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons masa harina (corn flour, used to thicken the chili)
1/4 cup hot water
TBD cayenne pepper (0 alarm chili; don't add any, 1 alarm chili; add 1 tsp, 2 alarm chili; add 2 tsp)


Brown crumbled sausage, diced beef and pork in a Dutch oven.  Add tomato sauce, Rotel tomatoes and chiles, 1 cup beef broth, ½ beer, 1/2 cup water, paprika, cumin, onion flakes, garlic, salt, chili powder, bay leaves, oregano, ground chocolate and ground red pepper.  Cover and simmer for 30 minutes to 1 hour, stirring occasionally.  Remove bay leaves.  Dissolve 2 tablespoons masa harina into 1/4 cup hot water to make a slurry.  Add masa mixture to chili.  Cover and simmer another 15-20 minutes.

Don’t cook the beans in the chili !  The starch will dull the flavors.  That said;

Rick’s “Self Powered” Beans on the Side

1 -14 oz can Bush’s Kidney Beans (drained and rinsed)
1 -14 oz can Bush’s Black Beans (drained and rinsed)
Swanson Beef Broth to cover beans
1 clove Garlic (minced fine)
½ tsp ground Cumin
1 Jalapeno (stem, seeds and vein removed, diced fine)
salt to taste

Bring to simmer and cook beans for 30 minutes.  Remove beans with slotted spoon and serve with the chili, if desired.

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