Preparation / Directions:
Ancho chilies (sometimes called pasilla chilies) are
sweet and fairly mild. In this recipe, they give the
chili a rich, dark color and provide a unique,
slightly spicy flavor. Remove stems and seeds from
chilies. Coarsely chop chilies. Place in bowl, cover
with boiling beef broth and let steep for 30 minutes.
Heat oil in large Dutch oven, add onion and cook,
stirring constantly, until soft and lightly browned.
Add garlic, salt and beef cubes. Cook, stirring
constantly, just until beef loses its pink color.
Strain chilies, reserving liquid and chilies. Stir 2.5
cups of chili liquid into beef. Stir in chili powder
and ground cumin seed and bring to a boil. Reduce
heat and simmer, uncovered, over medium-low heat for 1
hour, stirring occasionally. Place soaked chilies and
remaining liquid in blender container, cover and blend
until smooth. (If necessary, add 1/2 cup more of water
to make blending easier.) Add mixture to beef and cook
over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, for 30
minutes or until meat is tender. If a thicker chili is
desired, gradually stir in cornmeal 1 tbs at a time
then cook, stirring constantly, until thickened. Taste
and season with salt as desired. Remove from heat and
ladle into bowls. Serve with a variety of condiments
such as chopped yellow peppers, red onions, tomatoes,
avocado, fresh lime juice or grated cheese.