Last weekend, I felt like I was on a roller coaster ride! I had chopped, cooked and tasted chili for several days. The reason…I’d entered a Chili Challenge sponsored by our local Farmers Market. It’s a great event that teams up market vendors with community partners and all money raised benefits the market. I had two great partners, Charles Sheppard from Sir Charles Gourmet BBQ Sauces and Tommy Neese from Neese’s Country Sausage so I was feeling pretty good about going up against some formidable competitors. During my prep week, I’d made several different batches of chili and called on a few special taste testers to weigh in on my recipe and thank goodness, they knew what they were doing! The days were flying by and then, finally, on Thursday night, everything came together and I had the recipe perfected. Friends…all that hard work paid off – we WON!
Here’s the winning recipe along with my notes. It might look complicated but it’s not. The ingredients are easily purchased in your local grocery store with the exception of one, the BBQ Sauce. I am providing you a link on where to purchase Sir Charles Gourmet Sauce. The Extra Ingredient, is a speciality food store that provides excellent service, helpful advice and they are happy to ship directly to you. I’m sure you’ll change up the recipe somewhat, but the integrity of this dish will be changed without this sauce.
1 lb ground beef
1 lb hot sausage
3 tablespoons chili powder
1/2 poblano pepper – chopped
2 stalks celery – chopped
1 medium onion – minced
2 tablespoons garlic – minced
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground pepper
4 oz tomato paste – canned or from tube
1 16 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 cup Sir Charles BBQ Sauce
1/2 cup Sir Charles Hot BBQ sauce
12 oz lager Beer
1 cup beef stock
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon honey or sugar
2 cans (15oz) dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
- In an extra large stock pot or cast iron skillet, brown ground beef and sausage. Add chopped vegetables, except garlic, and cook until meats are cooked through and vegetables are tender.
- Lower heat to medium. Add chili powder, tomatoes, tomato paste and sauce to pot, mixing well. Scrape any bits from the bottom of pot. Cook for about 15 minutes stirring often.
- Stir in beer, beef broth, minced garlic,Worcestershire, vinegar and honey. Stir to blend ingredients.
- Simmer for about 1.5 hours stirring frequently allowing chili flavors to marry. If sauce gets too thick, add water in 1/4 cup amounts.
- Add beans and cook another 30 minutes, stirring frequently. Taste for seasoning and adjust.
- Serve with garnishes and extras – sour cream, scallions, grated cheese, hot sauce, jalapeños, hot corn bread.
- COOKS NOTES ~
- This recipe can be finished in the crock pot. Make chili sauce and put mixture in crock pot . Add beans and cook on low for 4 hours.
- Chili freezes well. Allow to cool, put in zip lock bags and lay flat in freezer for storage.
- You may purchase Sir Charles Gourmet BBQ Sauce from The Extra Ingredient in Greensboro, NC by calling toll free ~ 800-528-3618.