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Recipe from: Josh Gunn
8 ancho chiles
8 chiles of various types owing to preference (pasilla, guajillos, etc.)
4 slices bacon
2½ pounds (or so) chili meat or lean ground beef (93% lean)
½ cup olive oil
1½ cup Bloody Mary mix (Zing Zing or similar)
1 pint lighter beer, like Corona
1 large onion, chopped
1 medium green pepper, chopped
8 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon ground oregano, or more, to taste
1 tablespoon ground cumin
5 tablespoons quality chili powder, or more, to taste
salt, to taste
4 jalapeño or serrano peppers, chopped, or more, to taste
¼ Mexican hot chocolate tablet, grated
optionally, 2 tablespoons Masa Harina, dissolved in 2 tablespoons water
For the Toppings:
shredded cheddar cheese
green onions, chopped
pico de gallo
First, you have to prepare you chilies: in a large, cast iron skillet heat your chilies on all sides, charring them. You may want to do this outside on your grill, because charring chilies makes a lot of smoke (which then sets off the alarms, gets your dog barking like crazy, neighbors show up at your door, etc.). Once they're charred all over, cover them with water and let them soak. Some of them might want to float, so you can put another pot on top of them to "press them down" into the water.
Now, while your peppers are soaking, in a Dutch oven cook the bacon until it is crispy and the fat is rendered. Remove the bacon to drain on a paper towel. Add a little olive oil to the bacon fat and brown the beef (10 to 15 minutes); while its browning, salt and add chili powder to the beef. Crumble the bacon up into little pieces and put back into the beef.
After the beef has browned, remove from the oven, add some more olive oil, and sauté your onion, green pepper, and garlic in the remaining oil until tender.
Once the beef is browned, pour in the beer and the tomato sauce and simmer. Add the sauteed veggies and the rest of the dried ingredients, including the jalapeños. Warning: not all peppers are made the same; determine how hot yours are and add only for the degree of spiciness you like. If you don't like too much heat, remove the seeds and ribs from the peppers.
Don't touch your nose or eyes when cutting jalapeños, and wash your hands rigorously afterward.
Now, your peppers are probably good and soaked. Drain the water from them, remove their woody stems, and put them—seeds and all—into a blender. Add about a cup of water and purée the peppers. You should have a thick reddish pasted. Stir this stuff into the chili.
Now, once all the ingredients are in your Dutch oven or large pot, simmer for about five hours on low heat. If you would like a thicker, creamy texture to the final product, you can add the Masa Harina (or even flour) close to the end, which will act as a thickening agent.
Serve topped with cheddar cheese, chopped green onions, a dollop of sour cream, some pico, and maybe even avocado cubes! Or better, use this chili for a chilidog or chili cheese omelet! Now that's super!