So, I’d recently bought a Slow Cooker from Tesco and wanted to see how I got one making a Chunky Beef Chilli with it – I’d recently taken part in a Chilli Cook Off in Warrington and had come third so I was looking at a way I could up my Chilli game anyways.
This is possibly even easier to make than my normal Chilli, certainly feels like less effort anyway. I’ve had some positive feedback from anyone that’s tried this one, and I love it as well, especially the chunks of beef.
Once again, to point out, I typically use meat I get from the local farmers market type place, Heskin Hall, everything is pretty much store brand as we’re adding a combination of spices to them any ways. My spices come from East End Foods and Rajah Spices (You can get these from most ASDA’s though).
What you’ll need:
- 1lb Diced Beef Steak
- 500g of Mince Meat
- 1 Tin Baked Beans
- 1 50g Tin Chopped Tomatoes (Or, if you like a thicker sauce miss this out)
- 4 Bacon Medallions
- 1 Large Onion
- 1 Green Pepper
- 1 Red Pepper
- 1 Small Red Onion
- 5 Gloves Garlic
- Chillies (According to your own tastes)
- 2 Beef OXO Cubes
- Smoked Paprika
- Chilli Powder
- Hot Chilli Powder (Again, to your taste)
- Dried Coriander
- Cinnamon Powder
- Soft Brown Sugar (Optional)
- 75% Cocoa Cooking Chocolate (Optional)
- Salt (Optional)
- Black Pepper (Optional)
The chillies in this recipe will be quite important, we’re going to dissolve some into the sauce as we slow cook so you won’t be able to pull them out. As always choose the chillies you want to use carefully, if you’re unsure of how many you can handle then use super market ones, if you know you can handle more or are feeling brave then add in some hotter varieties.
We’re going to be slow cooking this one, if you stick all your vegetables in at the start they’re going to be a squishy mess by the time the beef has become nice and tender. Some people like that, I don’t, so I add them in after a few hours cooking. If you’re one of the ones that do, follow Part Two as though it’s part one.
- Finely dice the onion
- Chop up the garlic cloves
- Chop up a Chilli into fairly small pieces (or however many you want)
- Cut your bacon medallions into four strips width wide
- Put the diced onion, chopped garlic, chopped chilli, beef steak, mice meat and bacon strips in a large pan or wok (my slow cooker lets me take the metal “crock” part out which I use to fry)
- Fry off until you’ve sealed your chunks of beef steak and the onions have gone soft and golden (your mince meat and bacon should also be done by the time this happens)
- Crumble in the OXO Cubes and stir in till they’ve dissolved away
- Turn off the heat to the pan
- Add in the Baked Beans (Don’t stir)
- Add in the Chopped Tomatoes (If you’re using them, and also, don’t stir, if you do)
- Add 5 tea spoons of Cumin (I used good, heaped tea spoons full)
- Add 2 tea spoons of Paprika
- Add 2 tea spoons of Smoked Paprika
- Add 3 tea spoons of Chilli Powder
- Add 1 tea spoon of Hot Chilli Powder (Again, to your own taste)
- Add 1 tea spoon of Coriander Powder
- Add 1 tea spoon of Cinnamon Powder
- Add 4 segments of the Cooking Choclate
- Add back to heat and stir, stir, stir till all the powders have disappeared
- Remove from heat
For this next part, if you’ve got a slow cooker with a removal pot like me you can just stick it back in the slow cooker, or you’re going to want to transfer the contents of your pan / wok to an oven dish.
I try and time my slow cooking so I can use the ‘low’ setting and let it go for about 7-8 hours to get the beef nice and tender.
What will happen as your slow cooking is that you’ll see the onion, the garlic, the chillies and the bacon melt into the sauce. Yes, even the bacon. If you can still find bacon, it’s not done.
Seriously, melted bacon.
Anyway – Somewhere around the 4 hour mark…
Prep – Part Two:
- Quarter and slice the green pepper. By this I mean, from the top quarter it and the slice the green pepper into strips about half a centimetre apart. (It is after all, a Chunky Chilli 😉 )
- Quarter and slice the red pepper, by this I mean… Well… You know what I mean 😛
- Quarter, half and then peel the small red onion. So, as above and then flip it over on to its and half it then peel the separate layers away from each other.
- Roughly slice Chillies up – Again, depending on tastes and what heat you can handle
- Throw all that into the slow cooker / pot and stir in
- Grind a little salt in
- Grind a little black pepper in
Now, while you’re there;
It’s been cooking for a while, the flavours should have combined somewhat so you can get an idea of the taste, so, taste. If it feels a little harsh then add the soft brown sugar half a teaspoon at a time, if it lacks ‘depth’ then add more chocolate two segments at a time.
The chocolate will also help thicken the sauce a little if you find it a little loose, slow cooking can release juices in meat that do add more liquid to the sauce, it all depends on the quality of the meat as to how much you get – This, I’m afraid, is trial and error – If you find yourself liking the taste but not the looseness of the sauce then try not adding the tomatoes the next time you make this. Or, corn flour is something else you can do to thicken it up, I add half a tea spoon at a time, making sure to mix in thoroughly before adding more, it doesn’t take a lot to get it thicker!
This will all come down to your personal preference and the Chillies that you’ve worked with, if you’ve only used a couple of chillies then you might not need to add any more.
It’s probably worth another mention that if you go too far with the chocolate then it can also mask the strength of the heat, you might not feel it when you’re eating it, but then you might end up with a nice warm fuzzy feeling when you’re eating it as well – I quite like that to be honest but sometimes, the day after, well… Not so good. If you know what I mean…
Give it another two hours, check the tenderness of the beef, it should be falling apart when you approach it with a fork at this stage.
With no visible signs of bacon.
Once again, feel free to experiment with this recipe, it’s not set in stone, obviously – I tweak here and there often as I go along with these things, this is just a base recipe – And, if you do make it, please comment and let me know how it went, and if you changed anything – I’m not precious when it comes to these things 🙂