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Messed up my First Chili and Learned Some Things in the Process

dmouratidmourati Posts: 364
edited January 8 in EggHead Forum
I guess it was bound to happen sooner or later but I messed up my first attempt at chili on the BGE. I was going for a Texas style bowl of red. I started a pound of New Mexico chiles, dried as pods. They needed to be seeded, stemmed, reconstituted, pureed, and strained. This was a serious undertaking!

After seeding, stemming, reconstituting and blending I forgot the strain the resulting paste. Instead, I added it to the meat, cubed chuck roast in this case, along with some sliced onion and grated garlic. The mixture went into two, one pound ziploc bags overnight to marinade.

I added four cups of chicken stock to the mixture and cooked it on the egg for an hour at around 400F and then dropped the temps down to 250 or so and cooked for another four hours.

I made two rookie mistakes.

First was failing to strain the red chile paste. There were tons of slivers of chile pod throughout the dish. There was really no way to get rid of them. My poor wife sat across from me at dinner and grinned as she spat out small pieces into her napkin.

The second mistake was adding too much of the fatty/gristly pieces of the chuck roast. Once these are covered in the red sauce for the chili, you can't tell which pieces are fat vs meat. When you bite into one, it just is an overwhelming experience. Tough, fatty, gristly meat, swimming in those chile skin flakes does not go over well.

Overall the gravy was not quite what it was meant to be. This was my own inexperience with the ingredients and struggling through a recipe that looked simple but was deceptively time consuming and error prone.

Going on:



Coming off. You can see the paste sticking to the side of the dutch oven and little pieces of the chile skin flakes everywhere.



So, what did I learn?

There are a few critical points in a recipe where you need to do quality control. In this recipe, right before combining the beef/chile paste together was one of those critical moments. By missing my chance, I effectively ruined the dish. I still ate it but I wouldn't have served this to any guests.

The critical moment.


Mountain View, CA

Comments

  • StillH2OEggerStillH2OEgger Posts: 1,911
    Live and learn and get em next time. Thanks for sharing so we can learn.
    Stillwater, MN
  • lkapigianlkapigian Posts: 3,010
    Looks like a winner no,matter !!
    Visalia, Ca
  • Some recipes can be very humbling. We've all had our share and it's part of the process. If all our cooks were perfect, there would be no joy in having pulled them off. 

    Did the recipe call for cooking the beef before adding to the chili? Many do, and I am thinking that this would help render the fat.
  • dmouratidmourati Posts: 364
    edited January 8
    Some recipes can be very humbling. We've all had our share and it's part of the process. If all our cooks were perfect, there would be no joy in having pulled them off. 

    Did the recipe call for cooking the beef before adding to the chili? Many do, and I am thinking that this would help render the fat.


    Thanks.

    No. This was APL's Bowl o' Red which does a raw beef marinade overnight with the chile paste, onion, and garlic.

    I saw a similar recipe from Malcom Reed where he first smoked the chuck roast to about 70% doneness and then added it to a dutch oven.

    I'm not sure how a marinade and pre-cooking the beef would play together.  Seems like an either or to me.

    Thinking it over, I should have trimmed but kept the fatty pieces of chuck. Then I could mince them finely and add them to the pot. That way, you'd get the flavor/consistency benefit from the fat without it affecting the chunks meant to be eaten.
    Mountain View, CA
  • THEBuckeyeTHEBuckeye Posts: 4,044
    It's not over until YOU say it's over! 
    New Albany, Ohio 

  • bluebird66bluebird66 Posts: 2,038
    It still good to me.
    Large Egg with adjustable rig, Kick Ash Basket and various Weber's
    Floyd Va

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