My local bar in Brooklyn, New York hosts a chili cook-off every Super Bowl. One year, a guy brought in chili with chunks of steak in it instead of the traditional ground beef. Even though his chili didn't win, the texture alone, even the novelty of having huge chunks of steak in it, made his stand out. Plus, with the sweetness and richness of the flavors created by the combination of cocoa, oyster sauce, coffee and the umami bomb that is Maggi seasoning, this chili will be one that people will remember for a long time.
Technique tip: if you see her any meat with very savory seasonings, make sure to deglaze the bottom of the pan with stock, alcohol or some kind of liquid to create a depth of flavor. For a slightly thicker chili, you can stir in 1 to 2 tablespoons of corn flour.
Swap option: You can use serrano chilies instead of jalapeños or a combination of both. You can also add 5-8 drops of liquid smoke.
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- 1½ pounds of beef for stew, cut into roughly 1-inch chunks
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large white onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, roughly smashed and chopped
- 3 jalapeños, two of them chopped and seeded, one of them only chopped, retaining seeds for extra heat
- 2½ teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried onion flakes
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 3½ tablespoons oyster sauce
- 5 tablespoons tomato paste
- Two 32-ounce containers beef stock
- Two 15-ounce cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed with cool water
- One 10-ounce can chopped tomatoes
- 2½ tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
- 1 cup strong black coffee
- Shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- Crumbled cornbread
- Sliced jalapeños
- Sour cream or Greek yogurt
1. Preheat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat with 2-3 tablespoons of oil.
2. Liberally season the steak with salt and pepper. Working in batches, sear the cubes of meat completely on all sides. Use tongs to place meat and don't overcrowd pan. When they are browned, remove meat from Dutch oven using tongs and let it rest on a towel-lined plate.
3. Add a little bit more oil to the Dutch oven, and then add the onion, garlic and jalapeños.
4. When the onion begins to soften add all the spices. Stir thoroughly. After about 1-2 minutes, add the oyster sauce and the tomato paste. Stir thoroughly.
5. After cooking for roughly 2 minutes, add all the beef stock and stir, making sure you scrape all of the caramelized bits of oyster sauce, spices and tomato paste off the bottom of the pan.
6. Then add the beans, tomatoes, cocoa, coffee and reserved beef. Stir to combine thoroughly and reduce heat to low bringing the mixture to a simmer. Cover, and cook for two hours or until desired consistency is achieved.
7. Serve hot with the garnishes of your choice.