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We had a birthday celebration this week. My “husba” as I affectionately call him, loves Chili Con Carne, so this was his special birthday dinner. We have made this as a family meal for years. The children love it and we have a few ways of serving it. I would set the table with the chili, avocado, chopped tomato and lettuce, salsa and maybe some corn kernels and taco shells. Then everyone serves themselves the way they like to. Some would just have a big bowl of chili, others would make a taco and other versions of a mix up of these ingredients. Children love putting meals together.

I never had any problems with the chili being spicy but if you do, it’s easy to take the chili out and add it as an option on the table. Of course you might have seen a recipe for Chili Con Carne before, the only secret ingredient I have is a cup of beer. I find it adds a great taste to the meal.

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Recipe

3 tablespoons of olive oil

500 grams of lean mice beef
2 large finely chopped onions
3 cloves garlic diced

1 tablespoon of sweet paprika
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons chili powder or to taste

2 tablespoons dried ground cumin

(I use Herbies Mexican Chili Powder and extra cumin)
Coarse salt and freshly-ground black pepper to taste
2  cups tomato passata

1 cup of freshly chopped tomatoes
250 mls of beef stock
1 tablespoon of brown sugar

can kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup of freshly shelled borlotti beans

1 cup of light beer
Sour cream
Chopped green onions

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Method

In a large heavy pot over medium-high, heat the olive oil, onion, and garlic. Add cumin, oregano, chili powder, (or Herbies Mexican chili powder) sugar, salt, pepper. Then add mince beef and once brown and still in small pieces add tomato passata and freshly cut tomatoes. Stir until well combined. Now add the beef stock. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered and stirring often. When the liquid has reduced add the beer.

Continue simmering for 2 to 3 hours. You can add more beer or stock if you think it is becoming too dry.

(This can be made into a vegetarian chili by adding more beans and deleting the minced beef).

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