This is an old Craig Claiborne recipe for chili – it’s the real deal; not made with ground beef. I make it without the beans. I find it’s a forgiving recipe and you can play with the spices a bit. I like to substitute flat beer for some of the broth and I also put some lime wedges on the table when I serve it up. (btw – “coriander leaves” means cilantro)
Chile con Carne with Cubed Meat
5 pounds lean chuck roast
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup chili powder, more or less to taste
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
2 teaspoons dried oregano
6-10 cloves garlic, finely minced
4 cups fresh or canned beef broth
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1. Trim the meat and cut it into 1-inch cubes. Heat the oil in a deep kettle and add the cubed meat. Cook, stirring, just until the meat loses its red color.
2. Sift together the flour and chili powder and sprinkle the meat with it, stirring constantly so that the pieces are evenly coated.
3. Place the cumin and oregano in the palm of one hand. Rub the spices between the palms, sprinkling over the meat. Add the garlic and stir. Add the broth, stirring the meat constantly. Add salt and pepper and bring to the boil. Partly cover and simmer for 3 to 4 hours, or until the meat almost falls apart. If necessary, add more broth as the meat cooks. This chili should not be soupy, however. Serve with pinto beans, if desired, and chopped lettuce, sour cream, grated Cheddar cheese, chopped fresh coriander leaves, and hot pepper flakes.
YIELD: 8 to 12 servings.