I am not Paleo, or anything even remotely close to any of these new food trends. I am a food eater. I eat what I like and I enjoy food. Everything in moderation, right? This is just a well kept family secret that’s too good to keep to myself. My father in law has kept the family chili recipe a secret for a long time. His first mistake was giving it to me, and I feel like now is the time to share it.
My husband LOVES this recipe and he often asks for it with fresh cornbread muffins, but after we received a waffle maker for a wedding gift, I’ve been DYING to make cornbread waffles. So when he asked for chili and cornbread for dinner on Monday, I knew what I was going to do.
He’s not even 1/10th as adventurous as I am in the kitchen. I mean, the man has specific condiment requests, ONLY Heinz Ketchup (though I’m right there with him) French’s Yellow Mustard, certain types of pickles only, no meat pretending to be other meat (like turkey bacon…) so I thought for sure my cornbread WAFFLE would have been shot down like the World War Flying Ace, The Red Baron…. but it wasn’t! HUZZAH!
So I sort of went into this adventure with equal parts excitement and wary, I’d rather it not turn out horrible and have the “I told you waffles are for breakfast only” conversation every time I wanted to use my iron for anything less than conventional.
This chili is definitely up for substitutions and tweaking to meet your specific diet needs and tastes… this is just how I make it, and how my father in law does, and how his dad did…. but you know, whatevs.
GRANDPA FERGUSON’S WORLD FAMOUS PALEO STEAK CHILI
3-5lbs of chuck steak, cut into 1/2″-1″ chunks
2 green bell peppers, seeded and diced
3 onions, diced
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 large can of crushed tomatoes
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can tomato paste (the big one, or 2 small ones)
2 tbsp Chicken bouillon powder (optional, but I use it)
2 tbsp beef stock paste (the Better than Bouillon brand)
Each of these spices to taste or your own preference: cayenne, smoked paprika, New Mexico chili powder, California chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, pepper
Saute the beef in batches in fat (olive oil, pork lard, something similar) until the meat is seared and begins to brown. Remove to a plate to rest.
Add the peppers, onion and garlic and saute in leftover oil/beef juices. Add more oil if needed.
Add the beef back in. Add tomatoes. If needed, add water to cover. Add chicken and beef stock powder/paste. Add spices.
Let it simmer, covered for at least 2 hours. The longer you cook it the more tender the beef will become. I also recommend using cast iron or enameled cookware (like my Le Crueset soup pot – LOVE!!) because it caused better browning in the meat, and in turn MORE FLAVOR!
1/2-1 cup Masa Harina (found in the hispanic aisle or at latin markets, it’s used for making corn tortillas and it a finely milled corn flour)
1/2-1 cup Corn meal
tsp baking powder
sprinkle of sugar
squirt of honey
1/2-1 cup milk (of any kind)
2 tbsp melted butter
Mix dry ingredients together. Mix wet together. Add wet to dry. I sort of just mix everything together until I get a “waffle batter”… I know that isn’t super helpful, but it’s totally what I do. If it’s too wet, add more masa, if it’s too dry, add more milk. Whisk everything together and let it set up while your waffle iron gets hot.
Make sure you use some sort of non-stick spray or melted butter on the iron first. Place one scoop on each waffle area and use a spatula to spread it around evenly.
I like it to be on a medium setting and let it cook until it stops steaming. That gives you a nicely browned outside and a soft, fluffy, but fully cooked inside.
Then take a plate, load it up with a waffle or two, add a scoopful of chili right on top and garnish with your favorite chili toppings. Sour cream, cheese, green onions etc etc etc…
Of course those things totally take the “paleo” aspect away, but I’ve never considered this a paleo meal until my friend Holly said it was. If you’d like to say “screw it” and add a can of kidney beans, more power to ya, but that’s one of my husbands weird chili rules. NO BEANS!
How do you like your chili? Beans or no beans? Is this some sort of East Coast/West Coast chili foodie battle? Let me know in the comments below!