Six-pepper Venison Chili with Beans
This chili recipe has been sitting in my backlog of blog posts for almost a month now. At work at Christmas-time, they sponsored a card-making session where they provided cards, stickers, markers, etc. and encouraged us to make cards to send to our soldiers in the field. I thought it would be fun to do this as a team-building exercise, so I scheduled a meeting with my team over lunch and made up a big pot of chili and some of my fabulous corn muffins.
They were good sports, but we all felt awkward about making cards for people we didn’t know. I was very impressed with some of the impromptu artwork that happened, though, and I hope we created a smile and a bright moment for a soldier overseas.
I didn’t tell them it was venison chili and nobody noticed. I have lots and lots and lots of venison at my house as my parents, sisters, and brother-in-laws are all avid hunters, and yes, I’ll confess that I often use venison in place of beef. You can totally go the other way if you have no venison–just use lean grass-fed ground beef in place of the venison. (The nutrients and health benefits in the meat really change for the better when the cows graze on grass vs. the other junk that can be fed to cattle.)
The chili was well received by everyone who tasted it. Some added sour cream, shredded cheese and/or fritos to their bowl of chili (because the six peppers may have been a little too much for them). I just topped mine with a bit of cheese and some snipped green onions. It’s filling, it’s meaty, it’s spicy and good. Nom nom nom. Chili.
- 2 lb. ground venison (or ground elk or antelope or beef)
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 4 - 5 cloves garlic
- 2 cups chopped onion
- 2 cups dried beans
- 1 1/2 quarts water or unsalted beef broth
- 1 quart canned tomatoes (or 2 15-oz. cans)
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- About 1/4 cup chopped roasted, peeled hot peppers (I used a mix of jalapenos, salsa peppers and carrot peppers) - or to taste
- 2 cups chopped bell or sweet peppers, roasted and peeled
- 1 teaspoon chipotle powder (or to taste)
- 1 teaspoon chimayo chile powder (or cayenne--to taste)
- Better than beef bouillion or salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- In a soup pot, cook the ground venison until browned. Add the olive oil, garlic and onion and saute until the onion is soft and translucent.
- Stir in the dry beans and the water or broth, cover and let cook for a couple hours until the beans are tender.
- Stir in the remaining ingredients except the beef boullion or salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 - 30 minutes.
- Taste and add the "Better than beef bouillion" a teaspoon at a time, stirring and tasting after each addition -- or add salt & freshly ground pepper until the chili is salted to your liking. Simmer another 10 - 15 minutes or so to let the flavors meld, then serve hot with your choice of toppings/mix-ins.
RECIPE SOURCE: http://www.sumptuousspoonfuls.com/
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