Everyone loves chilli don't they?
It's one of those staple midweek meals, whipped up on a school night and reheated the next day for lunch (how does it always taste better the next day?). So, when I recently had friends over for dinner and knew I wanted something casual but hearty - chilli won out. The difference is, this was for a friday night feast so it needed pimping into something special!
I'm sure I'm similar to a lot of people in that I often start my recipes with something I've made from (or seen in) a book. This is a version which I've developed from a recipe in the wonderful Ginger Pig Meat Book. Well worth a read if you've not seen it before. If you don't have the book, the original recipe is here on Eat Your Books.
Meat wise, there's enough here for 8 people but... we ate the lot between 5! Now maybe my lot are just super greedy but you've been given fair warning! The meat is slow cooked making it super tender and this recipe is also great for low effort dinner parties as you can just make it the day before and reheat on the day.
- 1.3kg chuck steak cut into 1cm cubes (I bought it from the butcher already diced)
- 2 medium sized onions, roughly diced
- 4 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 dried and rehydrated ghost or ancho chilli (depending on how hot you like it!)
- 1 red chilli deseeded and finely diced
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1 tsp toasted cumin seeds
- 100 ml red wine
- 1x 400g tin red kidney beans
- 1x 400g tin white kidney beans
- 2x 400g tins of chopped tomatoes
- 2 bay leaves
- Salt & pepper for seasoning
- Preheat your oven to 180c/gas mark 4.
- Heat 2 tbsp oil in a frying pan or on a griddle and brown the meat all over on a high heat.
- Add to a large roasting tin and cook for 20 mins in the oven.
- Add the toasted cumin seeds, paprika, chillies, garlic and onions and put back into the oven for a further 5-10 mins.
- Add the tomatoes, bay leaves, 150ml water and the red wine. Stir it all up and season with salt and pepper. Cover the tray with baking paper and then make a foil lid.
- Cook in the oven for 3 hours or until the meat is tender, it could be longer than this!
- For the last 20 minutes, add the drained beans and check for seasoning.
The Ginger Pig book suggests serving their chilli with guacamole - as mine wasn't too different, I chose to do just that, with lots of garlic and chilli for a real kick. As it was a Mexican feast, I also added home made garlic ciabatta, soured cream and a Wahaca recipe summer slaw which complimented the whole thing perfectly. Add to that several (ahem) bottles of red and the night was always going to be a success!
What is your perfect feast with friends?