Friday, September 10, 2010

Black Bean Chipotle Chili

I've had this can of chipotle chili's in adobo sauce hanging around for a bit as I picked it up for making this kick butt shrimp dish.

With cooler than normal, outright Novemberish weather the last few days I decided I wanted to make chili and experiment a bit with the chipotle.

Chipotle is a smoked dried ripe jalapeno. When packed in adobo sauce it becomes soft again. As it is a ripe jalapeno to start with it is higher in natural sugars, slightly sweeter than the green variety. As it was smoke dried it imparts this wonderful smokey flavor to the dish. Not a bad combo to work with in the kitchen when it comes to chili makin'.

The amount of chipotle you add to the chili determines the heat. If you want a mild tang go with fewer, if you want full on burn where your ears burn and you break into a cold sweat add more. I strongly recommend you sample a bit of the chipotle BEFORE you get all crazy and add it to your other ingredients as there is no going back once in. Seriously...the burn sneaks up on you once you get past the smokey sweetness of the chipotle.

Black Bean Chipotle Chili
  • 1.5 lbs ground beef (I use coarse ground chuck)
  • olive oil
  • 1 onion - chopped
  • 1 T garlic - minced
  • 2-6 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1 T chili powder
  • 1 can diced tomato
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 1 can beef broth
  • 1/2 t black pepper
  • bay leaf
  • 1 T oregano
  • 1 T cilantro
  • salt

In large sauce pot add enough olive oil to coat bottom of pan. Over medium high heat crumble in the ground beef. Cook until well browned. Add onion, cook about 5 minutes longer until onion is translucent. Add garlic and stir in cooking 1 minute.

Add remaining ingredients. Check for salt and season to taste.

Reduce heat and simmer 1 hour with cover ajar to allow some steam to escape and the chili to cook down concentrating flavors.

Serve with sour cream and shredded cheese as garnish.

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