Tag Archives: Tex-Mex

My Mom’s Taco Soup

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I sit here in something of a state of disbelief as I type this post out, because I’m a bit surprised it’s taken me this long to share one of my favorite childhood meals. Trust me, it’s been on my to-blog list for quite some time. And here we are at last, right?

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This is taco soup, a perennial favorite from my family growing up. It’s hearty, filling, tasty, easy, nutritious, and my mom knew she could throw this together whenever she felt like it and no one would express anything but sheer enthusiasm at the dinner table. A welcome respite for her, I’m sure. She had the unenviable task of cooking for four fairly different palates, so everyone agreeing on all aspects of a meal didn’t happen very often.

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But I think we all agreed on taco soup. I still love it, all these years later. The first winter season we were married, I introduced Matt to this delicious family favorite, and happily, he’s joined its ranks of fandom. I try to make it once a year. And I’m so happy to finally be sharing it with you!

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Recipe notes: this is called soup, but it’s a bit thicker than traditional soup. However, it should not be as thick as chili. You should need a spoon to eat it. You can also add more chili powder if you want, my mom always added up to 2 tablespoons in addition to the Mexican spice mix. I found mine didn’t need it, but if yours does, of course feel free to add it. I think that’s it! Enjoy!

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{One Year Ago: Eggplant Parmesan Soup}
{Two Years Ago: Chipotle Collard Greens, Apple Hatch Chile Cobber}

Ingredients:
Olive oil
2 lbs. ground sirloin
1 medium onion, chopped
2 jalapenos, seeded and chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 recipe All-Purpose Mexican/Tex-Mex Spice Mix
1 recipe Homemade Ranch Seasoning Packet
1 (12 oz.) bottle of beer
1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomato, preferably fire-roasted variety
8-10 oz. frozen corn (no need to thaw)
1 (15 oz.) can pinto beans, drained
Beef stock or water, as needed
1 tbs hot sauce, such as TX Pete’s
Shredded cheddar or Monterey jack cheese, for garnish
Tortilla chips, for garnish

Directions:
Preheat a large stockpot or Dutch oven to medium-high heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil, then add the sirloin. Cook, breaking up and crumbling with a spoon or potato masher, until no traces of pink remain. Add the onion and jalapeno, plus salt and pepper to taste. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring often, until the onion has softened. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute more. Add the spice mixes and stir well to combine.
Now add the beer and stir for about 30 seconds, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Lower the heat to medium and add the tomatoes, corn, and pinto beans. Stir to combine, then simmer the soup for about 1 hour. Check in occasionally and add some beef stock or water if the soup is thickening too much.
Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper as needed. Add the hot sauce. Serve with the cheese and tortilla chips to garnish.
Leftovers reheat spectacularly, and this soup will freeze well too.

Bacon Cheddar Chipotle Biscuits

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Happy weekend! I’m spending a lovely long weekend visiting family in Texas so this post will be short and sweet. And all about biscuits, to boot.

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The title tells you everything you need to know about these wonderful, homey baked goods. Three of my favorite flavors all jammed into a light, fluffy, round biscuit. Bacon. And cheese. And chipotle. So perfect.

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I’m thinking these are perfect for making and serving alongside chili, which you know you’re going to be making tons of what with the upcoming football season (NFL starts tomorrow, right? Yea, go Cowboys!).

I used a three-inch biscuit cutter so I got six big ones, but you can certainly cut them smaller. You will likely need less time in the oven if so. Enjoy!

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{One Year Ago: Italian Sausage Hoagies with Caprese Relish}
{Two Years Ago: Fried Summer Squash with a Horseradish Dipper, Blueberry Pancakes}

Source: The Homesick Texan’s Family Table by Lisa Fain

Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbs baking powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 stick (8 tbs) unsalted butter, chilled
4 slices bacon, cooked until crispy and chopped
1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
1 canned chipotle in adobo, minced
3/4 cup half-and-half or buttermilk, cold

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 450 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Quickly cut the butter into small cubes and add it to the mixing bowl. Toss once or twice to coat the butter with the flour mixture, then use a pastry cutter or 2 knives to cut the butter into the flour, until the mixture is crumbly.
Now add the bacon, cheese, chipotle, and half-and-half. Use a rubber spatula to mix until the dough just comes together. There will still be crumbs, which is fine.
Flour a clean work surface and dump the dough out. Knead for 1 minute until the dough just comes together. It will be sticky.
Now pat the dough out to about 1 inch in height. Flour a biscuit cutter and stamp out circles, re-rolling and re-patting the dough as needed. Transfer the biscuits to your prepared baking sheet, placing them close together so they rise up, not out.
If you used a 3″ biscuit cutter, you’ll have 6 biscuits, and they should bake for 15 minutes. If you used a smaller biscuit cutter, it’ll be a few minutes less. Bake until the tops are golden brown. Serve warm.

Southwestern Turkey Sliders #SundaySupper

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Welcome to Sunday Supper! Our theme this week is Tantalizing Trays, which made me think of game day food, probably because that’s where my brain is anyway seeing as COLLEGE FOOTBALL started this weekend!!! I cannot wait to see my Baylor Bears beat up on SMU tonight!!

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When thinking about what to make this week, I also realized I’ve been somewhat neglecting sliders on this website, so I figured this was as good an excuse as any to remedy that. And thus, enter these delicious, adorable Tex-Mex-inspired turkey sliders – flavorful, moist, and adaptable to your tastes and preferences. Perfect for game day, or any other party that calls for trays of delectable little bites. Enjoy!

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And do not forget to see what my Sunday Supper gang has brought for you!

{One Year Ago: Kansas City Barbecued Spare Ribs}
{Two Years Ago: Buffalo Chicken Meatballs, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream, Grilled Salmon with Tamarind-Peach Barbecue Sauce, Strawberry Scones with an Almond Glaze}

Source: adapted from Emeril at the Grill by Emeril Lagasse

Ingredients:
Canola oil, for the grill grates
1 ½ lbs. ground turkey, preferably dark meat
1 small red onion, peeled and grated
2 scallions, minced
1 jalapeno or serrano chile, seeded if desired, minced or grated
1 ½ tbs All-Purpose Mexican/Tex-Mex Spice Mix, or your favorite Mexican seasoning blend
1 tbs Worcestershire sauce
1 tbs olive oil
Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
12 mini hamburger buns or slider rolls, split and toasted if desired
Garnishes of your choice: lettuce, tomato, avocado, thinly sliced red onion, ketchup, sour cream, chipotle mayonnaise, mustard

Directions:
Preheat a grill to medium-high. Rub some canola oil on a folded paper towel and rub it all over the grill grates when ready to grill.
In a large bowl, add the turkey, onion, scallions, jalapeno, spice rub, Worcestershire, olive oil, plus salt and black pepper to taste. Using your clean hands, mix everything together gently but thoroughly. Be wary of overmixing, this will make your sliders tough.
Divide the mixture into 12 equal portions, and using your wet hands, shape them into 12 small burgers, each about 3 ½ inches wide. Use your forefinger to make a slight impression in the center of each slider, to prevent “burger bulge” when they cook.
Place the burgers on the grill and cook until the turkey is just cooked through and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of a slider reads 165 F. Total cooking time is 3-5 minutes per side, depending on the heat of your grill. You may need to cook these in batches – don’t crowd the grill or you will steam the sliders. Nasty.
Remove the sliders to a plate when done. And now it’s time to assemble! I placed a bit of lettuce on a bottom bun, then a slice of tomato, then a slider patty. I liberally spread chipotle mayonnaise on the top burger buns, then topped them in place. Stick a toothpick in the center of each and dig in!

Savory Bites:

Sweet Treats:

Guest Post – Breakfast Bacon Enchiladas

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This week I have had the pleasure and honor of guest posting over at the wonderful and popular blog, Cupcakes and Kale Chips! Brianne is a fellow Sunday Supper member, who has one of the best food blog Facebook pages ever. Definitely head over and “like” her, then give her blog some love too. You won’t be sorry!

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Since August 30th, 2014 is National Bacon Day, I chose to make these Breakfast Bacon Enchiladas for her blog. I mean, it’s bacon…. In an enchilada!!! Crazy good.

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You can read all about them plus get the recipe over on Cupcakes and Kale Chips! Don’t miss them – because they’re also terrific for lunch or dinner. Just sayin’! Enjoy!

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Peach Salsa #SundaySupper

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Welcome to Sunday Supper, where this week we are Preserving Summer Produce! This theme is very good for me, because …… I’m really ready for fall. Okay, there I said it – it’s my shameful secret. This happens to me every year about this time. Even though I know I shouldn’t, I start becoming a tad ungrateful for all the beautiful summer bounty and I just want to make chili and watch a football game. And then bake something with apples…

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So thanks to my Sunday Supper gang for encouraging me to use up that summer produce while I still have access to it, and put off thinking about fall cooking and baking for a few more weeks, as I very well should.

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My grocery store is selling lovely, local Jersey peaches, so this week I snapped some up and made you this homemade, from-scratch peach salsa. I don’t know about you, but I have *always* been sorely disappointed by store-bought fruit salsas. I have a couple of brands I trust when it comes to store-bought regular tomato-based salsas, but it seems that the minute you add the word “mango” or “peach” to the label, well, brace yourself, cuz it ain’t gonna be pretty.

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There is no disappointment with this homemade peach salsa. Oh my, it is divine. It’s the perfect balance of sweetness to salty, with the peaches being front and center without overpowering the whole thing. So perfect.

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Oh, and this is so easy to make, too! The stovetop and food processer do most of the work for you. And I really can’t stress how delicious it is. That said, it’s not terribly spicy at all – probably very kid friendly. Leave the ribs and seeds in the jalapeno, or just add a second jalapeno if you prefer it hotter. So please try this one while you can still get fresh, in-season peaches. The salsa will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for at least a week.

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Oh and be sure you give some love to my wonderful Sunday Supper peeps!

{One Year Ago: Roasted Red Pepper and Goat Cheese Pasta Alfredo}
{Two Years Ago: Mussels in Red Chile Broth, Pickled Doughnut Peaches, Mexican Lamb Barbacoa}

Source: slightly adapted from The Homesick Texan’s Family Table by Lisa Fain

Ingredients:
1 lb. peaches (about 3 medium-to-large)
1 lb. plum tomatoes, halved
1-2 jalapeno, stemmed, seeded if desired, and halved
½ a red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and cut into thick slices
3-4 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
¼ red onion, peeled and root tip discarded
1 cup water
2 tsp fresh lime juice
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
Kosher salt

Directions:
First you will need to peel the peaches. To do this, bring a medium to large stockpot of water to a boil – you need just enough water to cover the peaches. Using a small paring knife, make an “X” on the bottom of each peach, a shallow cut that just cuts the skin. Submerge the peaches in the boiling water for 1 minute. Lift them out with a slotted spoon to a plate or cutting board. Let them cool a few minutes, just until you can comfortably handle them. Starting at the bottom where you made the “X”, peel off the skins. They should come off easily; if a few little stubborn bits are insisting upon hanging on for dear life at the top, don’t fuss over it. Life’s too short. Now pit the peaches and cut them into quarters.
Add the peaches, tomatoes, jalapeno(s), bell pepper, onion, and water to a large stockpot. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down and simmer until the tomatoes are soft, about 10 minutes (I did a combination of covered and uncovered). Remove from the heat and allow to cool, about 10 minutes.
Using tongs, carefully transfer all the solid pieces to your food processor. Add the lime juice and pulse on and off until combined but still somewhat chunky. If it’s too thick, add some of the water left in the stockpot.
Stir in the chopped cilantro and salt to taste. Let it cool the rest of the way to room temperature, then either serve or store in the refrigerator.
This is fantastic as just a dip for chips, but it’s also wonderful on chicken or fish – as tacos or by themselves. Oh and it makes a ton – about 2 cups!

Learn how to …

Sip sunny cocktails and smoothies

Scoop up special salsas and sauces

Jump into jellies, jams and preserves

Pucker up for pickles

Slurp and spoon soup and a side dish

Dive into divine desserts

Sunday Supper Movement

Join the #SundaySupper conversation on Twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7 p.m. ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.


Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement?
It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Chipotle Pinto Bean Dip with Jicama “Chips” + A Cookbook Giveaway!!!

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Welcome back! This week I am giving away my surprise excess copy of Mark Bittman’s The VB6 Cookbook! And each day of blogging, I’m sharing a delicious recipe from the book, to give you a taste of what you’ll be getting if you win. The giveaway goes on until Friday at 5 pm EST, and you can enter at the bottom of this post – don’t miss out!

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Yesterday I shared his insane Eggplant and White Bean Meatballs – totally vegan, and beyond delicious. I was in awe. Today I’m sharing one of the snacks chapter recipes. I have a huge weakness for bean dips, and they are super easy to make at home. Being from Texas, Frito scoops are quite common and popular for use as a dipper. Tasty? Oh yes. Healthy? Ummm, not really.

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So I was incredibly pleased to see Bittman’s take on what the heck we should be using to scoop up creamy, spicy bean dip. He had several, but the idea that really jumped out at me was jicama. Jicama! Yes! Why didn’t I ever think of that? Jicama is perfect for bean dips. It’s crispy, it’s sturdy, and it’s commonly used in Mexican or Tex-Mex cooking, so it doesn’t feel out of place at all. I am seriously doing this again.

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A quick warning about the bean dip: you can use one chipotle in adobo or two. It will surprise no one that I used two, and I can assure you it is super spicy that way. If you’re not into the heat, definitely use only one! enjoy!

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{One Year Ago: Grilled Romaine Hearts with Bacon Blue Cheese Vinaigrette}

Source: The VB6 Cookbook by Mark Bittman

Ingredients:
2 (15 oz.) cans of pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 garlic clove, peeled and smashed
1 cup packed cilantro sprigs
2 tbs fresh lime juice
1-2 chipotle in adobo, plus a little bit of the adobo sauce
Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1 large jicama, peeled and sliced into discs, like chips

Directions:
Put all the ingredients except the scallions and jicama into your blender. Puree until very smooth, adding water if it’s too thick and not completely cooperating.
Taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary. Transfer the dip to a bowl and garnish with the scallions. Serve with the jicama “chips” for dipping.

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My Mom’s Taco Salad

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Happy birthday Mom!! Yup, today is her birthday, so in honor of this day I’m posting one of my favorite things she made for us regularly while I was growing up. Please meet…. the only salad I willingly ate as a child!! It’s a miracle! Though truth be told, I probably picked out the lettuce….

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This one is so delicious, and I always loved it. It’s Tex-Mex to the core, extremely flavorful, and pretty adaptable to your own tastes. It’s perfect for when you want a rich, hearty Tex-Mex fix but the weather is too warm for chili (which is about half the year where I grew up).

I received this recipe around the time when I got married, and I’ve definitely made it from time to time over the years (Matt loves it). It deserves a space on the blog. I haven’t really changed it much except to make the dressing myself. My mom always uses Thousand Island dressing for this, and I have too; I just made it myself, which is extremely easy to do!

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This is a wonderful recipe to have in your repertoire – it’s very easy and perfect for tired, busy weeknights. Thank you Mom!! And I hope you have a wonderful birthday celebration today!

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{One Year Ago: Fattoush Salad, Chocolate Peanut Butter Pudding, Salted Honey Pie, Rhubarb Crisp}

Ingredients:
DRESSING:
1 cup mayo
½ cup ketchup
1/3 cup pickle relish
1 tbs chopped jarred pimentos
Couple dashes of hot sauce
Salt and pepper

SALAD:
Olive oil
1 lb. ground sirloin
1 small-medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
1 tbs chili powder
1 tbs ground cumin
Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
1 (15 oz.) can of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 small can sliced black olives, drained
3 tomatoes, seeded and chopped, divided
1-2 heads of iceberg lettuce, cored and thinly sliced
1 avocado, chopped
Shredded cheddar
Crushed tortilla chips

Directions:
First make the dressing. Combine the mayonnaise and ketchup in a small bowl and whisk until smooth. Add the remaining ingredients and whisk or stir until well combined. Refrigerate until needed.
Now make the salad. Place a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil and add the sirloin. Use a spoon or a potato masher to break up the meat. Cook until no traces of pink remain and it is nicely crumbled. Add the onion, garlic and jalapeno and cook another 5 or so minutes, until the onion has softened and appears translucent. Add the chili powder and cumin, plus season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine.
Shut off the heat. Add the kidney beans, black olives, and 2 of the chopped tomatoes. Stir to combine. Let this meat mixture cool slightly while you prep the salad ingredients.
To assemble, place a nice amount of lettuce on a dinner plate. Top with some of the taco meat, then spoon some Thousand Island dressing on the meat and lettuce. Garnish with avocado, cheddar, and tortilla chips.

Crispy Cornmeal Waffles with Spinach Queso Sauce

Crispy Cornmeal Waffles with spinach queso sauce

Welcome one and all to ……. WAFFLE WEEK!! Recently I’ve complained about mentioned that we’re redoing our apartment, and part of that redo included me updating my waffle iron. Yea!!

Crispy Cornmeal Waffles with Spinach Queso Sauce

My old waffle iron was a sweet wedding present Matt and I received well over 8 years ago, and I have completely worn it out. Matt and I adore waffles, and we try to make brunch at least once on weekends, not to mention we both love having breakfast for dinner. As you can imagine, that poor thing received a lot of abuse over the years. It was time.

crispy cornmeal waffles with spinach queso sauce

These waffles I’m sharing today were the inaugural run of the new waffle maker. I was jonesing for something savory, and if you give anything a Tex-Mex spin, then of course I’m all in. Obviously these waffles fit that bill.

crispy cornmeal waffles with Spinach Queso Sauce

Have you ever had queso on a waffle before? I’d never experienced such a thing, which I decided was just wrong on so many levels after my first bite. Clearly, I’ve been missing out. A lot. A lot, a lot, a lot. The sauce was spicy, creamy, bursting with flavor, and of course uber cheesy; we liberally doused it on waffles that were reminiscent of savory cornbread, with a crunchy exterior and a smooth, bready interior. The flavor was full of corn and the texture was pleasantly gritty. Love!

Crispy cornmeal Waffles with spinach queso sauce

Stay tuned this week, because I’m showing you what all your waffle maker can do! It’s gonna be delicious.

Source: slightly adapted from The King Arthur Flour Baker’s Companion

Ingredients:
WAFFLES:
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
2 tbs sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp chipotle chile powder
1 ¾ cup buttermilk
2 large eggs
1/3 cup canola oil

QUESO SAUCE:
½ cup salsa, homemade or a good quality store bought brand
8 oz. cream cheese
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded Monterey jack cheese
¼ cup snipped fresh chives
1 (10 oz.) package of frozen spinach, thawed and liquid squeezed out in a clean dish towel

Directions:
To make the waffles: in a large bowl, combine the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cumin, and chipotle chile powder. Set aside.
In a large measuring cup, whisk together the buttermilk, eggs, and oil. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, and whisk until most of the flour mixture has been incorporated into the wet ingredients. Use a rubber spatula to combine the last little bit. This prevents over-mixing, which results in dry waffles. The batter will be very thick.
Grease your waffle iron and spoon the batter in; cook according to manufacturer’s instructions. Remove the waffles to a plate and work in batches if needed.
Meanwhile, make the queso sauce. Place a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the salsa, cream cheese, and grated cheese, stirring until the mixture is smooth. Add the chives and spinach, and stir until combined.
To serve, spoon a generous amount of queso over each waffle and enjoy!

Queso Flameado with Chipotle Ranchera Shrimp Salsa

Queso flameado with Chipotle ranchera shrimp salsa

So the other day I’m trying to decide what to make for dinner, and I realize that I am craving fried shrimp something fierce. I mean, fierce. So I try to talk myself out of it. Because swimsuit season is approaching, and fried shrimp can be quite detrimental to the waistline. And I don’t really need them, it’s just a craving. But I tell myself that I can absolutely have shrimp for dinner, I just can’t fry it.

So. I put it on top of a bunch of melted cheese instead. Because that’s soooo much better and healthier than frying it. It is! Why are you laughing? Okay, fine…

queso flameade with chipotle ranchera shrimp salsa

I can’t tell you this little dish is low-cal, but it is insanely delicious. I found it on one of my favorite food blogging sites, The Homesick Texan.

A+, Lisa. Seriously, A+. This is incredibly tasty and satisfying. If you’re unfamiliar, queso flameado is the Tex-Mex version of the Mexican appetizer dish queso fundido. Queso flameado is popular around Houston and closer to the Mexico border; growing up in Dallas, I’d actually never heard of it as a kid. But, it’s so delicious. I mean, it’s melted cheese! How bad can it possibly be? So good, y’all….

Queso Flameado with Chipotle Ranchera Shrimp Salsa

{One year ago: Tin Roof Ice Cream}

Source: lightly adapted from The Homesick Texan

Ingredients:
1 (14-oz.) can diced tomatoes, preferably fire roasted
1 very small yellow onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
2 jalapeños, stemmed, seeded, and thickly sliced
1 chipotle in adobo chile
1/2 cup cilantro
Kosher salt
8 oz. Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
8 oz. pepper jack cheese, shredded
1 lb. small shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails removed
3 tsp olive oil, divided
2 tsp lime juice
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
Pinch of cayenne
1 clove garlic, minced
Tortilla chips, or warmed tortillas, for serving

Directions:
Place the tomatoes, onion, garlic, and jalapeños in a medium pot. Bring the pot to a boil and then turn the heat down to low and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the onion, garlic and jalapeño are softened. Turn off the heat and cool for 10 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. To make the queso flameado, lightly grease a 10-inch cast-iron skillet and add all the shredded cheese to the skillet. Set aside.
Meanwhile, as the salsa is cooling, toss the shrimp with 2 teaspoons of the olive oil, lime juice, salt, pepper, and cayenne. After the salsa has cooled, pour it into a blender or a food processor, along with the chipotle and cilantro, scraping the sides of the pan to get out all of the salsa. Pulse the salsa until roughly chopped. Add salt to taste.
At this point, place the skillet with the cheese in the oven and bake until the cheese is melted and bubbling, about 10-15 minutes.
While the cheese is baking, in the same pot that you used for the salsa, heat up the remaining 1 tsp of olive oil on medium heat. Add the garlic and shrimp along with any marinade juices, and cook the shrimp until they are pink and firm, about 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Turn the heat to low as soon as the shrimp are cooked. Pour the ranchera salsa into the shrimp and stir to combine. Let it go for a couple more minutes or until the sauce has warmed up again. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Remove the cheese from the oven and spoon on top of the cheese the shrimp and ranchera salsa. Serve warm with tortilla chips or warmed tortillas. You’ll need a spoon for scooping the dip. Enjoy!

Short Rib Chili #SundaySupper

Short Rib Chili

So, it’s time for another Sunday Supper, yes, but this is an extra special Sunday Supper, because our theme is …… CHILI COOK-OFF!!! As a girl who hails from Texas, this just excites me to no end. I adore chili, yes I’m particular about it like any good Texan should be, and I think chili cook-offs are the greatest thing ever. So I’m thrilled to be participating in this online contest.

Texas chili with short ribs

I knew that I would be making a proper Texas chili for this event – which means, NO BEANS. As the saying goes, “Chili comes from Texas, and Texas chili has no beans.” Proper Texas chili typically doesn’t use ground beef either; it’s usually a tough cut that gets cooked slowly over long periods of time, until it’s tender enough to just melt in your mouth.

So I’m doing proper Texas chili, but with a little twist: yup, I’m using short ribs instead of the standard beef chuck. I don’t know of anyone who doesn’t go gaga over short ribs, and I thought making a chili with them would be just over the top. I was correct in my hunch. This chili is simply amazing. So flavorful, and decadent from the cut of meat chosen; spicy as it should be, thick as it should be, and no beans. It’s beautiful.

short rib chili

Oh, and you know what just may be the most exciting thing about today? Well, I said chili cook-off, and that always means it’s a contest, right? Well, we do have voting, and the winner gets a prize! So please, scroll down to the bottom of this post and click on the link to vote, and please vote for my chili! Thanks, y’all!

Short Rib Chili

Source: adapted from Dinner at My Place by Tyler Florence

Ingredients:
4 lbs. English cut short ribs, on the bone
Kosher salt and black pepper
Olive oil
2 dried ancho chiles, stemmed and hand torn into small pieces
2 tbs whole coriander seeds
2 tbs chili powder
2 tbs sweet paprika
1 tbs ground cumin
1 tbs dried oregano, preferably Mexican
1 tbs sugar
¼ tsp ground cinnamon, preferably Mexican
2 medium onions, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno, minced, seeded if desired
3 canned chipotle chiles in adobo, chopped
1 (28 oz.) can whole peeled tomatoes, with their juice
2 tbs tomato paste
1 tbs grated unsweetened Mexican chocolate
2 tbs masa harina
Garnishes of your choosing: shredded or crumbled cheese, sour cream, cilantro, scallions, chopped raw onion, crumbled tortilla chips

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 325 F.
Preheat a Dutch oven over high heat. Generously season the short ribs with salt and pepper. Drizzle in a touch of olive oil, then sear the short ribs on all sides. Remove with tongs to a plate.
Meanwhile, in a small skillet over medium heat, add the torn dried chile pieces and coriander seeds. Toast for just a few minutes, shaking the skillet occasionally to prevent scorching. It’s done when it smells fragrant. Transfer the toasted spices to a spice grinder or coffee grinder that you only use for grinding spices. Grind until the mixture is a fine powder. Transfer to a bowl, and add the chili powder, paprika, cumin, oregano, sugar, cinnamon, plus 2 tbs kosher salt. Mix well and set aside.
When the ribs are all nicely seared, turn the heat to medium-high and add the onion, garlic and jalapeno. Cook until the onion has softened and turned translucent. Lower the heat the medium-low. Now add the chili powder you made, plus the chipotle in adobo. Stir to combine. Add the canned tomatoes, tomato paste, and chocolate. Use a wooden spoon or potato masher to break up the tomatoes.
Add the short ribs back into the pot, making sure each one is completely coated in the chili mixture. Nestle them in, in a single layer as much as is possible. Pour enough water to just cover the short ribs, about 2 cups.
Raise the heat and bring the mixture up to a simmer. Shut off the heat and place a layer of aluminum foil on top of your Dutch oven. Then top the foil with the Dutch oven lid. Place in the oven and cook for 3 hours without peeking.
The ribs are done when they have considerably shrunk back from the bone (you’ll see a good bit of the bone exposed), and they are fork tender.
Place the Dutch oven over medium-low heat and carefully remove the short ribs to a clean plate with tongs. Use a cereal spoon to skim off some of the fat in the pot, if desired.
Use two forks to shred the meat from the ribs. Discard the bones and excess fat. Place the shredded meat back into the pot and stir to combine. Add the masa harina and let it cook for about 5 minutes. Turn the heat up or down to let it simmer or just warm as needed; you want it to be fairly thick.
Serve warm, with the garnishes of your choice.

Be sure you check out all the other awesome chilis from the rest of the Sunday Supper team!

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