Hoot Owl Chili

This is prize-winning chili -- namely First Prize at the 1988 Original Viva Terlingua International Frank X. Tolbert-Wick Fowler Memorial Championship Chili Cookoff -- and the honors went to Maxine Reed.
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon MSG (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 5 tablespoons New Mexican red chile powder
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 3 pounds chuck tender, cut in 1/4-inch cubes
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1-1/2 cups beef broth
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 4 medium jalapeños, stems removed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
In a medium bowl, combine the paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, MSG (if desired), cayenne, cumin, white pepper and red chile powder. Mix the spices until well blended. Set aside.

Coat a heavy 4-quart saucepan with the cooking oil, and sear the meat, stirring briskly. Add the water, tomato sauce, beef broth and onion. Make a slit in each of the jalapeños with a knife, and add to the saucepan, together with half of the spice mixture. Cover, lower heat and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

Remove the jalapeños after 1 hour and set aside. Add the remaining spice mixture and 1/2 teaspoon cumin. When the jalapeños are cool enough to handle, press them through a strainer and add pulp to the chili. Discard the skins.

Cook an additional 30 minutes, or until meat is tender.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

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