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Chile Con Carne with Roasted Poblano Peppers and Avocado Cream Topping

"I didn't know you could make good chili." First thing that came out of my husband's mouth. Um yeah, I make everything "good". Anyway, it was at my sister’s house that I first had chili that not only had the traditional ground beef and bean base; but big chunks of steak meat as well. Sure this isn't a revelatory concept... but it sure does make a difference. I have nothing against vegetarian meals. In fact, I don't feel like I'm missing anything if my meal is lacking in animal protein. This is true for most meals, except for chili. Chili should be chocked full of meat. At least that’s my opinion. This is a hearty, spicy and satisfying winter meal that warms your tummy and makes you want to get all creepy in adult footed onsie pajamas and hang out by the fire. (I mean seriously, you're not 3. Stop wearing them! Unless, maybe, it’s Christmas.)


For the Chili:

1 lbs course ground chuck

1 lbs stew meat

4 poblano peppers

1 red pepper

4 jalapenos

1 yellow onion

15 garlic cloves

3 tbsp butter

12 oz beer

1 (14.5 oz) can beef broth

8 oz can tomato sauce

6 oz can tomato paste

2 cans red kidney beans

1 can pinto beans

1 can diced fire roasted tomatoes

2 tbsp chili powder

2 tbsp paprika

1 tbsp garlic powder

1 tbsp onion powder

1 tbsp coriander

1 tbsp cumin seed (ground is okay, I used whole)

1 tbsp salt

1/2 tbsp cayenne (I used 1 tbsp and it was spicy. My husband said it was good. But FYI... 1 tbsp is spicy)

Fritos (optional)

shredded cheese (optional)

rice (optional)

For the Avocado Greek Yogurt Cream:

2 avocados

1 individual serving container Greek yogurt (or roughly a cup if you have a big carton)

1 tsp salt

1 tsp garlic powder


For the Chili:

1. In a Lodge Dutch Oven* (I will give instructions bellow for a crock pot or a large cooking pot) melt the butter and add diced (cleaned and deseeded!!!) jalapenos, onions and minced garlic. Cook this mixture for 5-8 minutes or until browned.

2. Add the stew meat (1” chunks) and the ground beef (If you have a Kitchenaid Stand Mixer and the meat grinder attachemnt, you can grind your own fresh meat!) and cook another 3-5 minutes, or until the meat begins to brown.

3. Add the beer, beef broth, tomato sauce and tomato paste and stir.

4. Add the roasted poblano peppers** and the diced red pepper.

5. Add the beans and stir again.

6. Add the spices and continue stirring for a few minutes.

7. Reduce to a low heat and cook on the stove top, lid on, for roughly an hour. If you like “runnier” chili, you can serve it after this first hour. If you want a thicker, pastier chili, then cook for an additional 15-20 minutes with the lid off so that the excess water can cook off.

8. Stir and serve

For the Avocado Cream Sauce:

1. In a food processor, combine 2 avocados, 1 individual container Greek yogurt, salt and garlic powder.

2. Puree until even and smooth. Top the chili with a dollop or swirls of this delicious sauce!

Go ahead and assemble your chili bowl however you want. My husband added rice, I didn't. Cheese, yes. Fritos, hell yeah! You've had chili before. You know the drill. ;)

*If you’re opting for a crock pot, you have two options. The first involves just dumping it all in. When you do this, you miss out on the caramelization of the onions, garlic, jalapenos and meat. Option two, is cooking these ingredients first in a pan and then putting them into the crock pot with the rest of the ingredients. Either one of these would still result in leaving the ingredients in the crock pot for 6+ hours on a high setting. If you’re using a normal cooking pot, you can pretty much follow my instructions for the Dutch oven. The Lodge Dutch Oven, is a superior cooking product in my opinion though. It is much more versatile than the other two options.

**I have three options for roasting the poblano peppers. Whichever you chose, allow them to cool once roasted. Peel off the black part of the skin, deseed and dice them for the chili. From left to right we have the peppers cooked on the gas stove top, then baked, and then on the right is the broiled pepper. They all came out with fairly consistent results.

  • On a gas stove top, turn the burners on and place the pepper over the open flame. Allow them to blacken on each side.

  • Bake in the oven for 450 degrees 12-15 minutes on each side, flipping them and setting another timer.

  • Turn your oven on broil and allow the peppers to blacken, flipping them every 3-6 minutes.

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