Most cooks have a standard favorite recipe of a specific dish...one they always rely on for consistent quality and comments. Those are great, but there is the danger of getting too comfortable, to the point where you don't make any other variations or even look at different recipes for that same dish. Don't get stuck in a rut...branch out! Do something different! Take a leap!
Remember that episode of "Frasier" where he tells everyone to take advantage of the extra day and "Take a Leap" on February 29? Daphne gets a disasterous new haircut, Roz makes a fool of herself on air trying to meet a guy, Martin takes a horrible trip...so Frasier chickens out of his own "leap" (singing a difficult aria instead of his usual "Buttons and Bows") and then forgets all of the words..."Hippity-bippity-boppity-bow, something and something buttons and bows!"
Anyway, my chili recipe is one of those "old standbys" for me. It's always good and I get raves from JD so it's great for a stress-free meal. So recently I decided to branch out and try a completely different recipe for chili, and I'm so glad I did. YUMMY.
Chorizo, Beef and Bean Chili
recipe adapted from Cooking Light
2 links chorizo sausage
1 1/2 pounds stew meat, cubed
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 can chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa
1 teaspoon ground coriander (I didn't have this, so I left it out)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup dry red wine
1/4 cup lime juice
32 ounces reduced sodium beef broth
1 quart canned tomatoes, undrained and chopped
2 tablespoons masa harina or fine ground cornmeal
2 15-ounce cans pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
You'll notice I rarely post a picture of a recipe's ingredients...here's the main reason. I left out the following items from this picture: the other can of pinto beans, tomato paste, red wine, sugar, and masa harina. Oh well.
Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Brown chorizo in pan until browned; remove from pan and set aside. Brown the stew meat in batches; remove from pan and set aside.
Add onion and garlic to pan; saute for 3 minutes, or until softened. Remove 2-3 chipotle chiles from the can and chop. Save the remaining chiles and sauce for another use (put in zip-top bag and freeze). Add chorizo, beef, chopped chiles, tomato paste, sugar, salt, cocoa, coriander, oregano and cumin to the pot with the onions. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
Add the wine, lime juice, beef broth, and tomatoes to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
After 1 hour, gradually add the masa harina, stirring well to avoid lumps. Stir in the pinto beans and black beans. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 30 minutes.
Serve with grated cheese, sour cream, chopped green onions...or all on its own.