It's A Keeper: Uptown Down-home Chili

After eating chili all over Ohio and PA, I was craving this recipe: Uptown Down-home Chili. As I have previously admitted mentioned, I like to try different versions of Rachael's recipes and she has a ton of them for Chili. This is one of my favorites because of the interesting ingredients and how jam packed with flavor it is. This one is definitely a 30 minute meal if you can chop quickly. Otherwise it will take you about 40.

Maybe I like it too because the ingredients seem to be healthier than your average chili. Like ground sirloin (lower in fat) and lots of veggies. It's also nice to make a one pot wonder and have less clean up to do! Here is the recipe with my comments in brackets:

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 pounds ground sirloin
2 tablespoons grill seasoning (recommended: McCormick's Montreal Steak Seasoning) a palm full
1/2 pound baby Portobello mushrooms, chopped [Also called crimini mushrooms in my store]
1/4 pound shiitake mushroom caps, sliced
1 medium yellow skinned onion, chopped
3 ribs celery, chopped
1 large red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
4 to 6 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 canned chipotle peppers in adobo, chopped, with their juices or 1 generous palm full ground chipotle chili powder, about 2 tablespoons [Go for the chipotle in adobo if you can find it. It is near the Mexican foods in my store and I always buy two just in case they won't have it next time.]
1 tablespoon ground cumin, half a palm full
1 bottle imported beer (recommended: Stella Artois (...imported just 'cause we're Uptown and that's all they drink here.) [No Stella Artois in my store - I just bought whichever import was on sale]
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained
1 (15 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 cup beef stock (8-ounce box)
2 to 3 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
8-ounce piece smoked Gouda, shredded [The gouda is worth the extra money, but make sure you get the smoked kind, not the regular kind.]
1 small white onion, finely chopped

Heat a deep, large skillet or a pot over high heat. Add 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil and the meat. Season it with grill seasoning and sear it up, browning and crumbling it, for 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer meat to a plate and return pot to stove.

Reduce heat to medium-high and add another tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil. Add the mushrooms and begin to brown them before adding the other veggies. After 2 or 3 minutes the mushrooms will begin to shirk and soften. Push the mushrooms off to one side of the pot and add all the remaining veggies to the opposite side of the pot surface. Once the onions, celery, peppers and garlic have been working for a few minutes as well, mix the veggies with the mushrooms.

Add the meat back, season with Worcestershire sauce, chipotle in adobo or chipotle powder and cumin. Add in beer to deglaze the pot, scraping up all the pan drippings. [I didn't really have pan drippings in the bottom because the juice from the Worcestershire picked it up? But the sides were all crusted, so I scraped them.]

Reduce the beer by half, about 2 minutes. Add the black beans, tomatoes, stock and thyme to chili and simmer 10 minutes for flavors to combine. Taste to adjust seasonings. Top bowls of the chili with shredded smoked Gouda and finely chopped raw onions.


Thanks for leaving a comment! Reading comments and responding to them is one of my favorite parts of having a blog, so thanks for contributing.