There are many things that I love about Texas……
The beautiful morning sunrises….
I love the land, the open pastures, and squeaky old forgotten windmills…
I love in late April when the countryside is covered with Blue Bonnets…..
You know I love the Dallas Cowboys, admit it you love them too. (Even if you LOVE to hate them… 🙂 )
And on a cold rainy, November day my most favorite thing about Texas is bowl of homemade Spicy Texas Chili.
Chili is something that many Texans are very passionate about and old family recipes are usually kept secure under lock and key. While the origin of the “first” chili recipe is hotly debated the simple truth is a true Texas chili is a no frills Chuck-Wagon Cowboy dish. Texas chili is just whatever kind of meat you’ve got (which in Texas it’s usually beef), a few herbs, some spicy chilies, a little onion, garlic, liquid and most importantly NO BEANS. Now I’m not saying you can’t put beans in Chili, I’m just saying you can’t call it “Texas” Chili.
Chili is so much apart of the Texas way of life that in 1977 Chili was named the “official” State dish.
For my chili I like to use ground meat opposed to chunks of beef stew meat (it makes for a better Frito Pie) and I think chili tastes especially good when made with half ground beef (90/10) and half ground pork. But I have been known to make chili on the lighter side and use ground chicken or turkey which works great too.
Also try out your own blend of different chili powders I use, traditional chili powder, ancho chili powder, chipotle chili powder, a for that chili kick cayenne pepper. Finally for a thicker chili I mix with 3 Tablespoons of Masa (corn flour used in making corn tortillas) and ¼ cup of warm beef stock or water.
I hope Y’all enjoy and that my recipe for Spicy Texas Chili warms you up on a cold, wet November day!
“Top-Secret” Spicy Texas Chili & Frito Pie
1/3 Cup Chili Powder*
1 Teaspoon Smoked Paprika
½ Teaspoon Paprika
1 Tablespoon Cumin
½ Teaspoon Mexican Oregano or (½ teaspoon ground oregano)
1½ Teaspoons Garlic Powder
1 Tablespoon Onion Powder
½ Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper**
Black Pepper to Taste
1½ Teaspoons Salt, (to taste)
1lb Ground Beef
1lb Ground Pork
1 Large Onion, diced
3 Cloves of Garlic, minced
12 oz. Beer
8oz. Can Tomato Sauce
1 3/4 Cups Beef Stock
3 Tablespoons of Masa
*For extra-added flavor I use a blend of chili powders. I used ¼ cup regular chili powder, 1 Tablespoon of Ancho chili powder, and 1 Tablespoon of Chipotle Chili Powder.
** For a spicy chili use the full ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper, for a medium chili use only ¼ teaspoon and for a mild chili leave it out.
In a small bowl, measure out all of the spices and stir to combine.
Heat a large, heavy bottom pot over medium high heat with about a tablespoon of oil. Add the ground beef and pork to the pot with a good pinch of salt. Brown the meat and break it into small pieces with a wooden spoon. Add in the diced onion and the minced garlic. Once the meat is browned, spoon out of any excess fat.
Reduce the heat to medium low and stir in the spice mixture. Warm the spices through, until they are fragrant, about 1 minute. Pour in the beer, the tomato sauce and 1 1/2 cups of the beef stock. Stir everything to combine and bring to a boil.
Then reduce heat and simmer with a lid on for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
After 30 minutes, heat the ¼ cup of beef stock just so it’s warm and whisk in the 3 Tablespoons of Masa. Stir the beef stock and masa slurry into the chili and continue to simmer for at least another 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. The long you let it simmer the better it gets…
Serve in big Bowls.
To Serve up Frito Pie….
Place a handful of small Fritos in the bottom of a bowl, top with a ladle or two of chili, a good sprinkle of grated cheddar cheese, and a little minced white onion.