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Smoky Black Bean Chili


1 1/2 cups dry black beans (soaked and cooked) or 2 (15 oz.) cans drained/rinsed
2 onions - chopped
3 garlic cloves - chopped
1 carrot - chopped
1 small jalapeño - seeded and chopped
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp dried oregano
1 chili from chipotle in adobo sauce - seeded and chopped + 2 tsp sauce (more to taste)
1 28 oz. can fire roasted crushed tomatoes
1.5 lbs. 80/20 ground beef
1 T olive oil or bacon fat
1 T molasses
1/2 cup chicken stock or water
2 limes for garnish
1/2 cup cilantro leaves for garnish
1/2 cup sour cream for garnish


In large soup pot over medium heat add 1 T bacon fat or other oil and sauté 1 onion, 2 garlic cloves, carrot, and jalapeño for 5 minutes. Add the ground beef and continue cooking for 5 more minutes then add the spices, chipotle sauce and chili and chopped chili, continue cooking until meat is done. Next add tomatoes and black beans. Continue simmering for 20 minutes more to allow flavors to blend. Add the molasses and check for consistency, if to thick, add stock or water. Now check for desired smoky flavor and spice. You may need to add more chipotle sauce or molasses, check for salt. Serve immediately with fresh lime wedges, cilantro and sour cream or any other favorite chili toppings.

Note: If using dry black beans (worth the extra effort for flavor and texture), rinse and soak overnight. If using soaked black beans - In large saucepan over medium high heat add 1 T of desired fat, the bacon fat adds a lot of flavor in pan sauté 1 chopped onion and 2 garlic cloves for 3-5 minutes. Then add black beans and soaking water to cover 1-2 inches above beans. Continue cooking on medium heat simmering for about 1- 1.5 hours until beans are tender, you may need to add more water. Make sure there is at least 1/2 inch water above beans during cooking. While beans are cooking or if using canned beans start here.

Serve with:

Kunde Family Winery Zinfandel