Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Make the Chili Flavor Mix – remove seeds and stems from dry Chile peppers and lightly toast them with the cumin seeds in a pan or 30 secs in the microwave. Place them in a blender or spice grinder with cloves and pulse into a powder. Add in coriander, cinnamon chocolate and allspice. Pulse to mix.
Add wet ingredients to blender with the dry ingredients (All the Melinda’s Sauces, 1 cup of beef stock, cloves, coriander, cinnamon and allspice to the blender and incorporate well. Reserve the Chili Flavor mixture in a bowl.
Seriously Browning the MeatIn a Dutch Oven on med high heat, fry 2 strips of bacon until crispy, remove bacon and snack on it, you deserve a treat for making everyone this amazing chili!
Generously season the short ribs and beef cubes with kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper. Add 1/2 a tablespoon of olive oil to the bacon fat and brown short ribs on all sides 2-2.5 minute per side. You really want to brown them hard, this adds richer flavor and color, it is a most important step. remove ribs and reserve. Add a little more oil and brown cubes of chuck roast in batches, do not overcrowd the pan, I repeat, this is your flavor. Brown it hard on all sides. You may get some excessive fat browning the cubes, so remove some if necessary. Finally, don’t be concerned with a burnt looking bottom. The fond or burnt bottom of the pan will add a lovely layer of flavor and color once deglazed.
Lastly, brown the ground beef well, remove and drain on a paper towel.Remove the meat from the short rib bones and cube. This blend of meat adds a wonderful texture with tender chunks and sheds of rib meat.
On medium hight heat, Add a little more oil and sauté onions for a 3-4 minutes. Add garlic for 1 more minute. Add the tomato paste and stir for a minute, then add a cup of beef stock and chili flavor mixture, oregano, bay leaves and scape up the bottom of the pan , simmer for 2-3 minutes. Next, add the crushed tomatoes and the reserve liquid. Simmer for 2 minutes and then add all the meat. Stir to incorporate.
Time for more liquids, share the beer with the pot, half for you and half for the pot, apple cider vinegar and more stock to just slightly cover the meat. Incorporate all, then add 1 ounce of dark chocolate. Season with fresh ground black pepper and taste for salt. Add kosher or sea salt accordingly.
Cover and place in the oven and cook for 2.5 – 3 hours total, lower heat to 315 after 1.5 hours. Check every 30-40 minutes and add a little stock, beer or water if needed. You want the liquids to reduce and thicken, but sometimes that happens too fast, so adding a little to keep it loose.
If you want to add beans, do this at the 1.5 hour mark. I like 2 cans, we love our beans at Casa Fig.
So after 2.5 to 3 hours, when the meat is falling apart tender, remove from oven and bring back to stove top on simmer. Add 1 oz. of Bourbon. This is also a good time to give yourself a shot as well for a job well done.
Ring the bell, it’s time for a bowl!
Garnish with chopped scallions, grated cheddar, a dollop of sour cream or Mexican or Central American crema and serve with a variety of corn chips and a big squeeze of the Melinda’s Mexicana, it just gives it the perfect tang. If you want to bump the heat add some of the Melinda’s Fire Roasted Pepper Sauce, it’s chili’s best friend.