In a large iron casserole (dutch oven) fry the onions and diced red bell peppers with 2 tablespoons oil and 1 teaspoon salt at hight heat until softened. Set the onions and peppers aside. In the same casserole with two tablespoons oil at high heat braise the meat but do not overcook. Add the onions to the meat and the 1/2 cup of water. Mix the meat and onions thoroughly. Add paprika (mild) and cumin (ground) to taste. Reduce heat to a slow simmer. Cover and simmer for at least two hours. Check frequently for settling, and stir to keep from burning on the bottom of the pot. After two hours add the milder chiles (serrano, ancho) and optionally finely diced garlic. If using dried chiles, cut them into very thin strips or soak them beforehand.
Simmer for one more hour. After this hour add the more spicy chiles - again if dried cut in strips, if fresh or softened in warm water cut into small pieces. It is important not to cook the spicier chiles with the meat mixture the whole time. The chili will become too spicy and provide more pain than taste! The later in the cooking process that you add the spicy chiles the milder the chili will be. The simmering process should be continued (adding water very sparingly if necessary - the consistency should not become soupy at all) until the meat is reduced to fibers and the onions and peppers have completely dissolved. This could take up to 2 more hours depending on the quality of the meat - cheaper beef, the tougher cuts with suet and fat, takes longer but tastes better! Toward the end of cooking it is advisable to stir frequently to prevent burning. The consistency will be quite thick. If you have added too much water and the consistency is too soupy, use the masa harina as a roux to thicken. At the end salt and black pepper(moderately) to taste. Serve with mexican rice or cornbread. This is how I know chili con carne from growing up in San Antonio. Enjoy!
Use inexpensive beef but not ground beef! Add the chiles in the proper order at the right times. If you do not know the strength of the spicier chilies use them sparingly. A bottled hot habañero sauce can be provided at the table for the adventurous. Chili con carne should not be a painful experience. Keep the pot covered at very low simmer and look after cooking down every half hour or so. Tastes better the next day!
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|Serving Size: 1 Serving (410g)|
|Recipe Makes: 6 Servings|
|Calories from Fat: 87 (66%)|
|Amt Per Serving||% DV|
|Total Fat 9.7g||13 %|
|Saturated Fat 0.7g||3 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 6.8g|
|Polyunsanturated Fat 1.7g|
|Cholesterol 0mg||0 %|
|Sodium 4.1mg||0 %|
|Potassium 156.1mg||4 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 10.8g||3 %|
|Dietary Fiber 1.6g||6 %|
|Sugars, other 9.3g|
|Protein 1.4g||2 %|
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Calories per serving: 132
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