Cooked with ease this beef chilli is perfect for satisfying a crowd. With its deep rich flavours enhanced by the addition of dark chocolate and flakey, slow-cooked chuck beef, this is the perfect recipe to serve in the late evening sun for some warmth and comfort.
- Oil, for frying
- 800g chuck beef, diced
- 1 large red onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon oregano
- 1-2 teaspoon chilli powder, dependent on heat
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 red pepper, diced
- 2 tins plum tomatoes
- 1 tin kidney beans
- 1 tin pinto beans
- 50g 85% dark chocolate
- 3 avocados, ripe
- Preheat oven to 170˚C/ Gas Mark 3
- Add a tablespoon oil to the Signature Cast Iron 30cm Shallow Casserole and warm it over a medium heat. Brown the meat until caramelised - do this in batches to ensure the pan remains hot and the meat browns properly. Set aside on a plate.
- Add another small dash of oil to the pan and gently fry the onions for 5-6 minutes until soft. Add the garlic with a pinch of salt and fry for a further 2 minutes ensuring the garlic does not burn.
- Turn down the heat slightly and add the smoked paprika, oregano, chilli powder, cumin and cinnamon sticks and toast the spices for 1-2 minutes, stirring continuously.
- Return the meat and its juices to the pan coating the meat thoroughly in all the spices. Add the pepper to the pan and pour in the tomatoes. Fill one of the empty tomato cans with water and add to the casserole. Add the kidney and pinto beans and then grate and stir through the chocolate.
- Bring the ingredients to a simmer, securely place on the lid and put in the preheated oven to cook for 1½ hours, stirring occasionally.
- After 1½ hours, remove the lid, stir well and season to taste. Cook without the lid for a further 30 minutes to allow the sauce to reduce and thicken.
- In the meantime, grill the avocados. Heat a cast iron grill over a medium heat on the hob for 5 minutes to get it hot. Cut the avocados in half and remove the stone. Brush with a little oil, season and place flesh side down on the grill. Grill for 3 - 4 minutes or until the avocados have softened and have grill lines. You will know when they are ready as they will easily release from the grill.
- the apple and shallot pieces and pour over the gravy. Serve with seasonal greens and crackling.
- To serve, remove the chilli from the oven, stir well and season if required. Top with the sour cream, roughly chopped coriander and fresh chilli. Serve alongside the grilled avocado, tomato salsa and bread for dipping or a bowl of steaming rice.
For a next-level chilli, try using diced brisket instead of chuck beef. Although a little more expensive, this meat will be even more melt-in-the-mouth after being cooked for 2 hours.
If you are on the road and don’t have an oven, this dish can be cooked over a camp fire / stove. It is important though you have a stable and low heat source to cook the meat low and slow.
If you’re not an expert with fire, make in advance, pop in an airtight container and simply warm in a pan over a camping stove. Second-day chilli always tastes better!