October 18th, 2012
I had a cold this week, which gave me the imputus to try out a recipe for chilli, which I’d made up in the back of my mind. For some reason I though that diced venison would go very well with beans in a hot spicy sauce and of course it does, as well as curing colds!
Venison Chilli recipe (serves 6):
1.5 lb diced venison (trimmed of any sinew)
4 slices of chopped streaky bacon
half a hot chorizo ring (chopped)
1 lb of cooked pinto beans – I cook them from dried, but you could use tinned
1 large onion (chopped)
1 green pepper (chopped)
1 courgette (chopped)
2 or 3 fresh chilli peppers (chopped)
8 medium sized mushrooms (chopped)
5 or 6 medium tomatoes, blanched and chopped (or 1 tin)
6 pieces of garlic (chopped)
several pinches of crushed, dried chillis (to taste)
2 or 3 heaped teaspoons of chilli powder – mix dried powdered chilli with a pinch of oregano and cumin (to taste)
1 teaspoonful of hot smoked pimentón
2 teaspoonfuls of ground mixed herbs (a pinch of sea salt, black peppercorns, rosemary, sage and thyme – ground in a mortar)
a big squirt of tomato purée
a small squirt of anchovy paste
half a pint of home made chicken stock (recipe here)
half a glass of red wine
a splash of red wine vinegar
olive oil for frying
Use a large cast iron casserole with lid – start by frying the onion in hot olive oil and when it turns translucent add the chorizo and bacon with a sprinkle of crushed chilli. The pimentón in the chorizo will start to turn the onions an orange colour.
When this happens stir in the garlic (I used fresh garlic from Perry Court Farm)
and the venison. I put the chilli powder mixture in now, so that the meat gets the flavour from it while it browns.
When the meat has taken some colour, mix in the green pepper with the fresh chilli peppers.
Follow them with the courgette,
and then stir in the mushrooms and tomatoes. Squeeze in the tomato purée and anchovy paste, before adding the wine, vinegar and stock. Next sprinkle on and mix in the herbs and pimentón. I give this a couple of minutes to cook and taste before getting to the beans. It might need a bit more purée or crushed chilli (to taste).
The pinto beans go in last – I really like the texture of cooked dried pulses as opposed to tinned, which I find a bit soggy. For dried beans I use a pressure cooker, the beans need to soak for one hour and cook for 15 minutes, so it’s reasonably quick.
Cook the chilli for several hours at a low heat. I reccomend the oven, at about 120ºC, it’s gentle, even heat and the chilli won’t stick. Taste and stir about half way through and again towards the end. Don’t be afraid to add a bit more chill or red wine vinegar if it needs a bit of a kick.