Cheesy Chocolate Chili with Bacon.
Never buckle to the intimidation of remixing a classic. It is a human beings natural birth right to be inquisitive and being a natural young gun in the kitchen, my stove side sleight of hand is no stranger to rehashing a classic. The classic in question here: a Chilli Con Carne.
I felt that due to the fact a standard chilli possesses a familiar stew-like bite with a conversant warmth, I was able to keep a lot of the familiar elements of the chilli i.e. beans, mince, tomatoes, chillies etc whilst introducing new components that only highlighted the chilli’s standard balminess. Every bite remains textured like a traditional chilli however a brazen addition of smokiness and sweetness allows this remix to hit every spot the traditional dish hits whilst teasing your palette with so much more cha’s.
- Heat a tablespoon of garlic oil in a large pan with a lid
- Drop in a handful of smoked lardons (or scissor up a rasher or two of bacon, I’m not there and won’t judge) before scattering a tablespoon of russet coloured paprika and teaspoon and a half of chilli flakes
- Use a spoon to turn these two around, ensuring the salty bacon bits are evenly coated in the deep, paprika spices
- Break up a pack of mince into this mixture, using your spoon to loosely separate the particles of meat – the butcher in me LOVES this part – so that they can lose their red colour and be doused in orange juices
- Once coloured, break up small chunks of dark, chocolate into the meat mixture along with a tablespoon of dry oregano so that the darkly daring cocoa chunks can sweeten the meat while the oregano gives a herbal hit – however don’t stir too much as the consistency will go soupy whereas here we’re aiming for looser particles
- Once combined, pour in a can of chopped tomatoes and a cup of water from the tap, stirring with your wooden spoon
- Drain a can of kidney beans before empting into the soup like mixture
- Bring the chilli mix to a boil before lowering the heat, clamping on a lid and going about some other business for 15 minutes while the chilli seethes
- After 15 minutes, return to your simmer Spanish supper and drop in small handfuls of grated cheese. This acts as almost a sticky glue for all components in the mix – it also means you needn’t add cheese later!
- Dish up and serve with plain, fluffy rice
A remix is never a bad thing. It gives you the liberty to try sexy new twists to old favourites but still giving you the reminiscent succour of an old classic. Food, like music, is ever evolving and even the oldies, given a twist can become goodies. Except a Britney song. Never remix a Britney song.
They are perfect the way they are.