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Red Chile – from Mike Graham
Very authentic, very San Antonio, and very good. A bit of preparation
You need 15 dried chile pods (as in chile peppers - watch out, some of them are reeeeeally hot! best to ask before you buy). Drop them in the blender with 2 teaspoons of oregano, 4 cloves of garlic, and 2 teaspoons of salt. Blend it well.
You need a heavy pot. Heat it up hot and pour in enough peanut
or other cooking oil to coat the bottom. Drop in 2 pounds of stewing
beef that has been cut into 1/2" cubes, and stir them around to sear them.
You want some good colour on there to seal in the juices so they don't
get tough. At this point you'd normally stir in some flour to coat
the meat. I haven't come up with a good substitute for flour for
this purpose yet - any thoughts, anyone? Anyway, add 1 1/2 cups of
water. Normally you'd stir until it thickens. If you don't
use flour then it won't thicken, and it will be more like a soup than a
'standard' chili. Anyway, add the blended chile pods and simmer for
an hour. Keep a pile of celery sticks handy for dipping, and some
sour-cream as well.