Since I finally planned my menu planner is so much easier for me to prepare things without getting confused what to prepare. I feel if you planned early it's easy for everyone. I have loved chili con carne since forever, but I haven't had it for some time since I got married..completely forgot about it until I bought Jamie Oliver's America cookbook. And for a while it struck me "why didn't I think of this stew?"
Chili con carne commonly known in American English as simply "chili", is a spicy stew that contains chili peppers, meat and often tomatoes and beans add in the ingredients. Other seasoning such as onion, garlic and cumin to bring out the flavors.
I'm not kidney bean fans, but I love pinto. Pinto beans are actually the baked beans you have for your breakfast :) I love it!
2 kg beef brisket, trimmed and sliced into 2.5cm thick pieces across the grain (I use mince meat)
500 ml hot coffee (I skip this one because the kids don't take coffee)
3 large dried chilies
2 heaped teaspoons ground cumin
2 heaped teaspoons smoked paprika
1 heaped teaspoon dried oregano
2 fresh bay leaves
2 red onions, peeled and diced
3–4 fresh chilies
2 cinnamon sticks
10 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely sliced
Freshly ground black pepper
4 x 400 g tins of chopped tomatoes
3 tablespoons sugar
3 red, yellow or orange peppers, deseeded and sliced
2 x 400 g tins of beans (kidney, butter or pinto), drained
Make your coffee and, while it's hot, soak the dried chillies in it for a few minutes to let them rehydrate. Meanwhile, put your largest casserole type pan on a low heat and add a few lugs of olive oil, the cumin, paprika, oregano, bay leaves and onions.
Fry for 10 minutes, until the onions have softened. Deseed and chop half your fresh chillies. Slice up the rehydrated chillies and add them to the onion mixture along with the chopped fresh chilli, the cinnamon sticks, sliced garlic, a good pinch of salt and pepper and a splash of the chilli-infused coffee. Stir, then add the rest of the coffee, the tinned tomatoes and the molasses or sugar. Add the pieces of brisket and another good pinch of salt and pepper, cover with a lid and simmer for around 3 hours, stirring occasionally.
After a few hours use 2 forks or a potato masher to break the meat up and pull it apart. Once you've done this, add the sliced peppers and tinned beans and leave to simmer, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes with the lid off until the meat is completely falling apart and delicious. Have a taste and season well – if you require a bit more heat (like I would), this is the time to deseed and chop the rest of your fresh chilli and stir it in. Dollop a big spoonful of soured cream over the chilli if you fancy it, and serve straight from the pan, with fluffy rice, flatbreads or potatoes and a really nice fresh lemony green salad