Saturday, January 6, 2018

Soups of January - Chile Colorado

Well, perhaps this is not really a soup. But it is sort of like one, so there! It is incredibly rich and has extreme dried red chili presence. (By the way, I periodically educate myself on when it is "chili," and when it is "chile," and then I forget. So do your best to ignore it if I get it wrong here.) It is very warm, but not so spicy-hot that you have to keep drinking milk to calm the fire on your tongue.

I don't even keep chili powder mix in my cupboard anymore. I do use dried chipotle, dried ancho powder, smoked spanish paprika, and regular paprika as random spices, but when I need to create a real authentic red chili personality, I fix up a sauce from whole dried chile peppers. Always choose peppers that are pliable and leathery. They they are more fresh and flavorful. You just pull off the stems, rip them open to dump out the seeds and pull the membrane if it is prominent. Rinse them because sometimes they are dusty. Pour very hot or boiling water over them, cover, and let rest for 20-30 minutes. Drop them in the blender with enough soaking water to process them, and blend until pureed. They should be like applesauce. One thing I do is make more than I need and store it in 1/2 cup sized canning jars in the freezer.

I found this recipe online, and I really like it!
You can play with the spice amounts, but be careful with the salt until you are able to taste it at the end when it is all cooked down and about done.

Chile Colorado

7 ancho/pasilla dried peppers
2 guajillo dried peppers
(you may have to toy with these numbers when the peppers are small or randomly sized)

Cover with 3 c. boiling water and let steam 30 minutes. Puree.

2 lb beef, cut in 1/2 inch sized pieces
salt, pepper
6 garlic cloves, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 Tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried sage
1 teaspoon dried oregano
5 cups beef broth

Brown meat in a little oil. Add spices, Stir around until fragrant. Add 5 cups beef broth. Simmer uncovered one hour. Stir in chile puree. Simmer another 45 minutes.

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