Thursday, January 27, 2011

Tigua Chili

Every now and then, I get to post something that's actually chili-related. Last time was a recipe for Chuy's Green Chile Salsa, with a picture of an empty salsa bowl. What can I say? I already ate it all. After all the heat I took around here for that picture, I figured this time some pictures of the food itself were in order.

Today we have Tigua Chili from the Chili Nation cookbook by Jane and Michael Stern.

This is the real deal;  it can be hot enough to cause tears and sniffles if you like - we usually tone down the heat with sour cream, cheese, rice, and tortillas. We also use less chili than the original.

Please observe the chili-eater in his native habitat. His expression says, 'Hands off - this is my chili.'

He can't hide a grin, though.

The basic recipe is found in the Sterns cookbook, but we have made some tweaks over the years, tripling the amount, using real ground chili (not "chili powder") and various other things. This recipe works well with venison, if you have a hunter in the family.

Tigua Chile

  • 3 chopped onions
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 1/2 lbs beef round steak, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons dried Mexican oregano
  • 2 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1/3 tablespoons mild powdered chili (not chili powder)
  • 3 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 3 tablespoon masa harina, dissolved in
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • cooked rice (optional)
  • sour cream (optional)
  • cheese (optional)
In a big pot, saute onion and garlic in oil until soft. Add in beef; cook until browned.
Add in salt, , pepper, oregano, cumin, chili powder, tomato sauce, and 3 cans water; stir to mix.
Bring to a boil; decrease heat to a low simmering boil and cook, partially covered, for 1 hour 10 minutes.
Remove from heat; add in masa harina mixture; return to low heat and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes.
Serve with rice, or tortillas on the side: all useful for muffling the heat. Also helpful is a dollop of sour cream.