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I've won two local chili contest with this recipe, including one that had a Texan on the judging committee. If a Texan can give my chili a
"thumbs up," it must be great! Remember there are no beans in a true Texas chili, but I like to add some
beans, but not too much. This is one of those recipes that I just do. I've estimated the
amount of each ingredient I have used in making this recipe below. If you want to add more
or less of an ingredient (or even leave one out), feel free to do
so. It is very hard to "wreck" a chili con carne.
Learn about the history and legends of
Chili, Chili Con Carne, and also check out more of Linda's great
Soup, Stew, and Chili Recipes. Also learn about the history of
Chili, Chili Con Carne.
Linda's Chili Con Carne
Yields: 8 to 12 servings
Prep time: 30 min
Cook time: 4 hr
2 to 3 pounds lean ground beef
, finely chopped
1 or 2 large chopped
1 tablespoon dried ground cumin or to taste
1 tablespoon dried oregano or to taste
2 tablespoons chili powder or to taste (fresh
chile peppers may be substituted)
salt and freshly-ground
black pepperto taste
3 to 4 cups tomato puree, tomato sauce, or
fresh tomatoes, coarsely chopped (or a combination of all three)
2 to 3 (14 1/2 ounce) cans beef broth*
1 to 2 tablespoons molasses**
2 cans black beans or kidney beans, rinsed and drained
Grated sharp cheddar cheese
Chopped green onions
* I also like to substitute red wine for some of the liquid. Water may also
be substituted for some of the liquid. NOTE: I usually add a lot of red wine.
** Molasses helps cut down the acidity of the tomatoes. Honey may also be
In a large soup pot or
cast-iron Dutch oven over medium-high heat, saute ground beef,
onion, and garlic until the meat becomes gray in color. Add cumin, oregano,
chili powder, salt, pepper, tomatoes, and beef broth. Reduce heat to low and
simmer, covered, approximately 3 to 4 hours, stirring often.
Note: Additional beef broth, water, or wine may be added as needed.
Add molasses to taste to cut down the acidity of the tomatoes. Add beans and
continue to simmer another 30 minutes. NOTE: During the
last 30 minutes of cooking, do a lot of tasting and adjust seasoning to taste.
For maximum flavor, cool chili and refrigerate overnight so flavors will mellow
as chili is best made 1 day ahead to allow the flavors time to marry.
When ready to serve, remove top layer of solidified fat, reheat chili over low heat, and serve in large individual bowls.
Set out garnishes for your chili (some chopped green onions, sour cream and shredded sharp cheddar cheese make great topping).
Makes 8 to 12 servings.
Chili Making Hints and Tips:
Chili that is too salty can be saved by boiling a peeled potato in the
pot of chili (the potato will absorb a lot of the salt).
If your chili comes out too thin, either:
Continue to simmer the chili longer until more liquid is reduced.
Add some instant mashed potatoes.
Add some yellow corn flour. This will also
help absorb salt. Simply make a corn flour and water slurry, and add it in until the chili reaches
the consistency is you want.
Masa Harina is another thickener that works very well in chili. It will add a
slightly sweet hint to the chili, but it makes the consistency
Toss a grating of bitter chocolate into chili to give it body and mellow the flavors.