Right about now I am missing my camera. I had some great food-prep photo ops this morning, as I put together my first paleo, grass-fed beef chili. I didn’t follow a recipe. I just used my general chili knowledge to put this together.
I my chili spicy, but not deadly. This is not atomic chili that causes tears and pain. It has a nice warm spiciness that may be intense for spice wimps. Adjust depending on your personal tastes (and the spiciness of your peppers).
So, here is what I used:
- 2 lbs. grass fed beef (90/10)
- 5 carrots (old carrots in the back of my fridge, given new purpose!)
- 5 green jalapenos
- 5 red chilis (also jalapenos? They looked the same)
- 1 big onion
- 3 – 4 cloves of garlic
- 1 quart of organic beef broth
- 2 large cans of organic fire-roasted tomatoes
- 1 can tomato paste
- Olive oil
- Spices to-taste (cumin, paprika, cayenne pepper, black pepper, sea salt, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder).
And here is what I did:
- Chop up all the veggies (keep them separate for now). Peel and chop your onion. Peel and chop your carrots. Remove the tops and seeds from your chilis and chop em’ up. Dice your garlic cloves.
- Saute the veggies. In your chili pot, start with a big dollop of olive oil, and add your onions. Saute on medium to medium-high heat. Not so hot that you burn your olive oil. When they’re mostly translucent, and the garlic. When the garlic’s been on for a bit, add the chilis. After a while, add your carrots. (Very imprecise, sorry. But it doesn’t matter too much.). Your carrots will NOT get cooked at this point. In fact, they’ll still be totally crunchy when you remove the veggies from your chili pot, and put them aside.
- Brown the Beef: In the pot where you started cooking your veggies, brown up the beef. You may wish to start adding your spices at this point. I waited until the next step, but cooking the spices with the browned beef seems like a good idea. I go very light on the salt until later on. Also remember that your stock may already contain salt.
- Put it all together: Add the veggies back in, mix in your tomato paste, tomatoes, spices, and finally, the beef stock. It’s OK if the beef stock makes it a little watery. It’ll cook down.
- Simmer for a good while: Turn it to medium to low heat. You can cover it (for a while, but you’ll want to leave the cover off for a while to thicken the chili). Stir it every once in a while. Add water (or more beef stock) if it gets too thick for your preference.
At the earliest, it’s ready to eat when it reaches the desired thickness and the carrots are tender. But you can keep it on for longer and let the flavors continue to meld. Mine is simmering away right now, and has been for well over an hour. I am trying to decide whether to add cinnamon. Sounds good in theory……
Anyway, now I have to figure out what to eat with it? I used to pour it over rice, or jalapeno corn bread. I suppose I could use it to top a baked sweet potato? Over spinach, collards, or other greens (cooked, or just wilted w/ the hot chili). Over cauliflower rice, or mashed parsnips? Inside a roasted acorn squash “bowl”? Over cooked & drained spaghetti squash? Lots of options! But right now I am going to have a bowl of it, plain.
I am hoping this will help banish the last of my chest cold.
BTW, if you eat dairy, top it with cheese and/or a dollop of cold sour cream or plain greek yogurt. Mmmm……………