Ask five people for a chili recipe, and you'll get five different recipes. Much like there are hundreds of species of dog, all called "dog" despite their vast differences, there are thousands of chili recipes out there that don't look at all alike. Some of them don't even resemble chili, but a soup that's been adapted six times to accommodate the tastebuds of the one making it.
This chili recipe seeks to end your need for all those other chili recipes. It's inspired by the minimalist recipes of chili's humble origins. Over the last ten years, it has evolved with little tweaks here and there, before arriving at the final version you're about to cook. The simple addition of beer and a couple of aromatics only enhance the simple flavor, without muddling it.
And in case you were wondering, It won a large chili cook-off with a unanimous decision. So, we think you'll appreciate it as well.
It's a milder chili, although you can crank up the heat if you wish. For that, you can increase the number of chipotles and jalapeños, and/or leave the ribs and seeds in them. However you choose to spice it up, we recommend trying little changes over time, rather than switching to a five-alarm variation overnight.
We are honored to publish this personal recipe of Professional Chef Luke Shaffer, with his permission. You can read more about him at the end of this recipe. Without further ado...
**Note: "If you know beans about chili, you know chili ain’t got no beans!"**
2ea dried ancho chili, stemmed, seeded
2ea dried chipotle chili, stemmed, seeded
2ea dried guajillo chili, stemmed, seeded
1ea 14.5oz can fire roasted tomatoes
2c beef stock/broth (low/no sodium preferred)
2T bacon fat/lard/tallow/ or canola oil
2lbs ground venison
½ea yellow onion, very fine dice
1ea jalapeno, stemmed and seeded (or leave seeds in for more heat), very fine dice
2ea garlic clove, pasted
1T Mexican oregano
Salt and pepper to taste
½ea 12 oz beer, nothing too hoppy or malty (you know what to do with the other half)
*remember that you can always add more salt later, but you can never take it out*
Recipe shared with permission from Luke Shaffer. Luke is a passionate culinary artist with a love for the outdoors, and prefers to make this with wild venison he's hunted himself. When he's not cooking, hunting, or fishing, he's talking about it on the Camo and Hooks Podcast.
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