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Fat Tuesday Chili

Fat Tuesday Chili


  • 2 1/2-3 pounds beef chuck, trimmed and cut into bite-size cubes

  • Salt and pepper

  • 2-3 tablespoons canola oil

  • 5 tablespoons butter

  • 2 tablespoons Gebhardt chili powder or Ancho chili powder

  • 1 rounded tablespoon ground cumin

  • 1 tablespoon paprika

  • 1 tablespoon coriander

  • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 2 green bell peppers, chopped

  • 2-3 ribs celery, chopped

  • 6 cloves garlic, sliced

  • 1 large fresh bay leaf

  • 3 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped

  • 4 tablespoons flour

  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce

  • 1 bottle pale ale, at room temperature

  • 3 cups chicken stock

  • 1 can red beans (15 ounces), drained

  • 1 can diced tomatoes (15 ounces) with green chilies

  • Scallions, thinly sliced on an angle

  • Tabasco sauce, to pass at table

  • “Cheese-It” snack crackers, crushed, for topping


Pre-heat the oven to 325°F. Bring the meat to room temperature and pat dry. Season with salt and pepper. Heat the oil, a turn of the pan, in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Brown the meat in batches to avoid overcrowding the pot. Remove the browned beef to a platter. Add the butter to the drippings in pan and reduce heat to medium. Add in all the dried spices and stir for 1-2 minutes to toast them. Add the onion, bell peppers, celery, garlic, salt, pepper, bay and thyme; cook, partially covered, to soften, 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the flour and stir to cook it out a bit, then add the Worcestershire and beer. Let the beer reduce by half, then add the stock, beans, tomatoes and browned beef. Bring the chili to a low boil, then cover and place in the oven for 1 1/2-2 hours, until the meat is very tender. The chili can also be kept at low simmer on the stovetop partially covered, but be sure to stir it occasionally to prevent scorching. Top the chili with scallions and a few dashes of Tabasco and cheese crackers and serve.