I had a small roast thawed in the fridge. Too small, really, to feed the whole family the way we eat roast beef. But it was already thawed and so I wanted to come up with something interesting. I was in the mood for something different. Not just a hunk of meat…but something tasty and good and unique.
With the rule that I wanted to keep it low carb today. (I had a few too many Panera whole grain bagels over the weekend!)
In came my Well Fed paleo cookbook. No, I’m not paleo and never could be paleo long term. But I’m committed to whole foods and nothing on the paleo menu is ever going to be made with pre-packaged ingredients. Plus it totally fit the low carb/no wheat bill!
The recipe for Chocolate Chili struck my fancy. I’ve never put chocolate in chili before, but I know it’s a crucial ingredient in mole. I love that dark, rich, spicy sauce, so I thought, hey, I’ll give it a try. Princess is gone tonight, Middle is eating vegetarian right now, and That Man is still doing his crazy salad diet, so it was really going to be me and Littlest eating it. As long as I make pasta for her, she’ll eat about anything on top of it.
The results…. OH. So good. Yum. To me, it wasn’t spicy at all (there are only 2 T of chili power in it). As I ate, it made my head sweat, but it didn’t burn my mouth at all. Littlest said it was spicy but she ate a good bowl’s worth. That Man sampled the meat and said it was way too spicy for him. So if you’re a bit of a wimp in that regard, you might want to cut down on the spice! For me, it was perfect.
So here’s how I modified the original recipe to come up with Chocolate Chili.
2-3 lbs lean roast beef, trimmed and cubed (original recipe called for ground beef)
2T coconut oil
1 diced onion
4-5 cloves garlic
1 can diced tomatoes
1 small can tomato paste
1 c. beef broth
2 T chili powder
1 t all spice
1 t parsley (original recipe called for oregano but I didn’t have any)
1 1/2 T cocoa powder
salt and pepper to taste
In batches, brown the chunks of meat in coconut oil and remove. Add the onions to the pan and scrape up the browned bits. If needed, add a little broth to help deglaze the pan. Press the garlic and add the rest of the ingredients, including the browned meat. Reduce heat to a low simmer and let cook 1.5-2 hours.
For me, it was two thumbs way way up. The meat was fall apart tender and I didn’t miss the beans at all. I put a nice mound of raw spinach in the bottom of my bowl and spooned the hot chili over the top. Littlest ate hers over pasta.
On a chilly gloomy day, it was the perfect belly warmer!