This is not a sponsored post. Melissa’s Produce sent me their Steamed Red Kidney Beans for recipe testing. Precooked, with a super smooth texture, they’re a delicious addition to this chili. All opinions are my own, and as always, I only work with products I like and want to share with my readers.
“When you’re cooking, be sure to touch your ingredients, your equipment — everything — with feeling. With love. With heart and soul. You will taste this affection in the food. It’s the difference between good and amazing.”
This is certainly one made with my love, heart and soul. It’s for my family, after all. And you can taste it!
- 1 approximately 2-pound brisket
- 6 strips applewood smoked bacon cut into bite-sized pieces
- 2 cups small dice yellow/brown onion
- 2 tablespoons crushed and roughly chopped fresh garlic
- 2 tablespoons minced jalapeño pepper
- 2½ tablespoons roughly chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
- ¼ cup finely chopped fresh oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon each: ground cumin and chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2¼- pounds vine-ripened tomatoes
- ½ cup dry red wine such as Merlot, Pinot Noir, Shiraz
- 3 ears fresh corn
- 3 9-ounce packages Melissa's Produce Steamed Red Kidney Beans
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped bittersweet chocolate
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Optional garnishes: sour cream grated cheddar cheese, finely chopped red onion, and fresh oregano leaves
To prepare the brisket: Preheat the oven to 225 degrees F, and lightly coat your largest oven safe skillet (cast iron is perfect) with olive oil. (See notes) Season both sides of the meat generously with salt and pepper, and then place it -- fat side up -- in the pan, and cover it with a fitted lid or heavy-duty foil. Place it in the preheated oven for 6 hours. Remove the brisket from the oven, and place it on a large plate. (Leave any grease and juices in the pan!) Let the brisket cool slightly, and then use the back of a knife or a spoon to gently scrape off the fat and discard it. Now either shred the meat with your fingers, or cut it into slices -- against the grain, and then into bite-sized pieces. (The bite-sized pieces will ultimately shred later in the recipe.) Set aside. * YOU CAN DO THIS ENTIRE STEP THE DAY BEFORE -- JUST DON'T WASH THE PAN IF YOU DO. COVER IT WITH FOIL, KEEPING IT AS IS.*
Place the unwashed pan over medium-high heat and add the bacon. Stirring occasionally, cook until golden and mostly crispy, about 5 minutes.
Add the onions, garlic and jalapeños, still stirring from time to time, cook until the onions are soft and beginning to caramelize, about 15 minutes.
Stir in the chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, fresh oregano, dried oregano, cumin, chili powder, and cinnamon. Cook until this is very aromatic, about 2 minutes. Season lightly with salt and then turn the heat to the lowest setting.
Either crush the tomatoes in a blender, or roughly chop them until they're a coarse purée. Add this to the pan, along with the wine, turn the heat back up to medium-high and bring to a boil. Then reduce the heat to low and let this simmer for at least 15 minutes -- the alcohol should be cooked off and the liquid should be beginning to thicken.
Cut the kernels off the ears of corn and add them to the pan with the kidney beans, and the prepared brisket.
Keeping the heat low, let all of the flavors marry for another 20 minutes or so.
Mix in the chocolate and let it melt. Then season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve with any of the desired garnishes. (Here's How to Season to Taste.)