The Cookbook

A collection of favorite recipes

Woody DeSilva’s Championship Chili

Posted by Sylvia on Sun 6 March 2011

This recipe for Texas Chili is from Saveur Magazine. I’ve been interested in trying one of the “no-beans” chilis but generally they look a bit sad to me. I didn’t want to make a version that left me thinking “I should have added in a can of pinto beans”. This one attracted me as straight-forward to make and interesting. I can’t get chile pequín here so I used a large chopped up chipotle in adobo and a couple of tablespoons of the sauce. Our sweet paprika is smoked so that added to the smoky flavour.

I simmered it gently for four hours, not two (luckily I prepared it the day before!) and then reheated it quickly for lunch.

  • Serves 6

  • 4 lbs. beef chuck, trimmed and cut into 1⁄2″ cubes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 4 tbsp. canola oil
  • 5 medium onions, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 6-oz. cans tomato paste
  • 4 tbsp. dried oregano
  • 3 tbsp. chili powder
  • 4 tsp. ground chile pequín or cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp. sweet paprika
  • 1 tbsp. Tabasco
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 4 tbsp. masa harina
  1. Season beef with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a 6-qt. pot over high heat. Working in 4 batches, brown beef, about 3 minutes per batch. Using a slotted spoon, transfer beef to a plate.
  2. Add onions and garlic; cook until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Return beef to pot; stir in tomato paste. Cook, stirring frequently and scraping bottom of pot with a wooden spoon, until tomato paste is caramelized, about 12 minutes. Add oregano, chili powder, chile pequín, paprika, Tabasco, and cumin; cook, stirring frequently, for 1 minute.
  3. Add 5 cups water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer, stirring occasionally, until meat is tender, about 2 hours. Stir in masa harina; season with salt. Simmer, stirring, until thickened, about 5 minutes.

I served the chili with green onions, cheddar cheese and a dollop of sour cream on top. On the side we had corn bread but that was a little bit weird. I think just a big piece of crusty white bread would be better.

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