Chili Contest Winner Recipe
Chili contest winner recipe are a dime a dozen. I’ve tried many different ones until I came up with this simple layered chili recipe that is impressive. This may have not won a fair contest, but it won the most important contest of them all, the families.
I remember thinking that chili was no big deal, just throw some chili powder in with tomatoes and there you go, I was mistaken. It is however very simple to make with the right ingredients and process to deliver a quality recipe. The thing to remember is you layer each ingredient to the chili at different times during the cooking process. For instance, herbs and seasonings are added when the beef has begun to brown and release its oils. Adding them now will allow them to fry in the hot oil of the meat. Frying spices in oil give them a completely different flavor. Frying them in the fat enhance the original flavors of a spice, making them bolder and more intense. This process is crucial to develop the flavors in the chili. Once everything has been fried, then the wet ingredients are added.
I’m sure we’ve all tried the bag of chili seasonings, but why spend money on a bag when all you need is a few simple items you already have in your pantry. Besides, it’s the layering that makes this chili recipe special and the dark chocolate I added.
For more like the Chili Contest Winner Recipe and 30-minute recipes see everyday cooking section.
1 lb ground beef
1 large onion diced
2 cloves chopped garlic
1 chili chipotle pepper dried and rehydrated
2 chili negro peppers dried and rehydrated
2 oz. dark unsweetened cocoa
28 oz crushed tomatoes
14.5 oz diced tomatoes
8 oz of water
2 tablespoons dried cilantro (optional fresh)
2-3 tablespoons dried oregano
4- 5 tablespoons dried chili powder
In a bowl rehydrate the peppers in hot water and set aside.
Dice the onions finely and heat some oil in a dutch oven. When the oil is hot add your onions and fry until soft and browned. Half way through the cooking of the onions add the chopped garlic. Once they are browned remove them from the pan and set aside.
Reheat the dutch oven and add the ground beef. Cook until browned. Once browned add the dried herbs. Stir them into the beef, allowing a few more minutes for the herbs to release their flavors.
Take the rehydrated peppers from the water and drain. Remove the seeds and chop them finely.
Put the onion and garlic back into the pan with the ground beef and herbs. Add the crushed and diced tomatoes, rehydrated peppers, water and unsweetened cocoa, stir to combine the ingredients. Continue until the cocoa has melted. Reduce to a simmer for 10 minutes.
Add the fresh cilantro at the end before serving if you are not using dried. Top with cheddar cheese and sour cream.
Serve with cornbread or hoe cakes. See my recipes for both in Southern Cooking.