Tag Archives: beef

Beef Chili and Cheddar Cornbread

I’ve nearly been swallowed by this city in the best, all-consuming sense of the word. I have no other excuse.

I celebrated my one-month work anniversary. It snowed in October. I turned 23.

And this recipe is the best meal I’ve posted yet. Seriously.

Beef Chili:
2 large onions, chopped
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic
4 carrots, diced (I also roasted ’em)
2 pounds ground beef
1/4 cup chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon crumbled dry oregano
Dried red pepper flakes, to taste
1 16-ounce can diced tomatoes
1 1/4 cups beef broth
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 8-ounce cans kidney beans
2 red bell peppers, chopped (I roasted these, too)

1) In a large pot, heat the oil over moderately low heat and cook the onions in it for 5 to 10 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic and carrots and cook for one minute more.
2) Raise the heat to medium and add the beef, stirring and breaking up any lumps until it is no longer pink, about 10 minutes. Add the chili powder, cumin, paprika, oregano and pepper flakes and cook for another minute. Add the diced tomatoes, broth and Worcestershire sauce and simmer the chili, covered, for 35 to 40 minutes.
3) Add the kidney beans, bell peppers, salt and pepper to taste and simmer for an additional 15 minutes, until the bell peppers are tender.

Cheddar Cornbread:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 cups milk
3 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted, plus extra to grease the pan
8 ounces aged extra-sharp Cheddar, grated, divided

1) Combine the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine the milk, eggs, and butter. With a wooden spoon, stir the wet ingredients into the dry until most of the lumps are dissolved. Mix in 2 cups of the cheddar and allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes.
2) Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13 baking pan.
3) Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smooth the top, and sprinkle with the remaining grated cheddar. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool and cut into large squares. Serve warm.

Recipes based on this beef chili recipe and this cheddar cornbread recipe.

Beef Stew

It’s cold outside. Snowing, even.

I also started classes today. My last semester of college has begun.

So, I made stew. It’s just a meat ‘n’ potatoes kind of day.

End of story.

This stuff is going to taste even better tomorrow, I can tell. The greatest aspect of this recipe is altering the ingredients to suit your personal tastes. More meat, additional vegetables, etc. It’s really difficult to mess up, I promise.

Beef Stew:
1 pound stew beef
1/4 cup flour
salt & pepper
2 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
1 red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 or 2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon paprika
Dash ground allspice
2 cups beef broth
5-6 carrots, sliced
3 potatoes, quartered
cornstarch (optional)

1) Coat beef pieces in a bowl with flour, salt and pepper. Cook the meat on medium heat in a large pot with oil until the beef is browned thoroughly. Add onion and soften briefly. Add garlic.
2) Stir in Worcestershire sauce, bay leaves, paprika and allspice. Pour in beef broth and let simmer for about an hour.
3) Add carrots and potatoes and cook until potatoes are soft, for about an hour. If the stew gravy isn’t thick enough, remove a cup or so of the gravy from the pot and stir in a few tablespoons of cornstarch until all the clumps are gone. Combine back into the stew.
4) Serve with bread for maximum gravy enjoyment.

I’m also in the process of writing up my New Year’s resolutions/bucket list for the year. What’s on your list?

Beef & Black Bean Tacos

It was one of those weeks where I rejoiced over my omnivore status. My brain has desperately needed the amino acids to cope with my workload. Also, Whole Foods was selling local ground beef for, like, $4 a pound. Are you kidding me?! Even my burnt-out brain, failing to achieve its normal level of synapses, knows a good grocery decision when it processes one. Plus, I’ve actually been to the farm where the cows/food are raised. (I find that connection very reassuring.)

Unfortunately, this week promises to be equally demanding. At least I have these leftovers to provide me with glorious neurotransmitters. I’ma need ’em.

Beef & Black Bean Tacos:
Ground beef (about a pound)
Canola oil
1 red onion
4 cloves of garlic
1 can black beans
1 jalapeño
a few sprigs of cilantro
1 lime
a few generous shakes of cayenne pepper and oregano
1 small can of tomato paste
flour or corn tortillas
cheese (cheddar, Colby Jack, or a four-cheese blend)

1) Add a bit of Canola oil to a pan on medium heat. Add the beef and stir regularly to brown.
2) Meanwhile, add some Canola oil to another pan on medium heat. Add diced onion, garlic, and jalapeño. Cook until soft.
3) Drain the beef of any excess water. Stir in cayenne pepper and oregano. Add to onion mixture.
4) Add black beans, cilantro, and tomato paste. Combine well and cover. Cook for about 10 minutes.
5) Heat a frying pan on low-medium heat. Place tortilla on pan, add cheese and let melt briefly. Top with beef filling. Fold over and weigh down with a heavy pan, pot, or heat-safe dish. Cook for two minutes per side.

So, perhaps these are taco-dillas. In any case, they pair well with salsa and some sour cream since they’re stable enough to take cold dips.

What’s your favorite Tex-Mex meal? I love spicy food and am trying to increase my repertoire.