Growing up on the east coast and in an Italian household, I never heard of Cinco de Mayo or indulged in the celebration of the day. As an adult and living in California I can say when the end of April approaches, “Cinco de Mayo is in the air”! I recognize that it’s still a few weeks away but I also recognize that May 5th is right around the corner.
Being the creative person I am in the kitchen, thought I would do a little experimenting with Mexican dishes and share them you. I knew exactly what my menu would be this year as I wanted to keep it simple, yet delicious…to kick off the celebration menu I want to share my first recipe that I made, it’s a homemade Beef Chili Colorado and here are a few other recipes, black beans and my salsa that would be a great addition to this meal.
Chili Colorado is a beef dish that is not generally spicy and cooked in a red sauce. I was first introduced to Chili Colorado from my sister-in-law, Lorraine, many years ago, she had a very simple recipe in which we all loved. Being the “chef” that I am I had to experiment with flavors and I have to say that I am glad I did as I love this version of Chili Colorado.
I used dried Ancho Chile Peppers and Chile Morita, the ancho chili peppers should be easy to find in the hispanic section at the market, the chile morita is a great chile pepper that is a little spicy and has a smokey flavor, if you can’t find the chile morita, use 1 Chipotle pepper with a little adobe sauce (found in the hispanic store).
The first thing I did was sauté my onions and garlic in a pot that could go in the oven
while they were getting brown I removed my stems from the chile peppers and removed the seeds, this is 2 oz of the ancho chile pepper
I also removed the seeds from 1 chile morita, I only used 1 chile morita because this is not supposed to be a spicy dish and the chile morita pepper might be small but they are spicy
I cut up the peppers and placed them in my pan with the onions
I placed my seasonings and my water in the pan and let it simmer together about 20 minutes. I removed the simmered peppers and strained them, make sure to squeeze out all the sauce. The last photo is the finished sauce!
I floured the cubed meat (this helps the sauce to thicken later)
and browned it in the same pan that I made the sauce in (I didn’t cook it through, only browned the pieces)
I put the meat back in the pan, poured the sauce over it
covered it and baked it 75 minutes. (next time I will wash the pan to eliminate the oil). I tossed it and placed it back in the oven
and baked it an additional 75 minutes…OMG this was such an amazing dish, the peppers added the perfect amount of spice and the meat was so tender. I loved this sauce and recipe!
Whether you are celebrating Cinco de Mayo or just wanting to explore trying a new recipe for Chili Colorado, I can assure you my recipe is super easy and so delicious. I used a 2 oz package of the ancho chilies and only 1 chili morita and it was the perfect combination. A key thing to remember when it comes to chili peppers, you never can tell the heat level of a chile pepper, while the all look the same, one can chile can be super hot in flavor while the other only adds texture so you never know what you are going to get.
* If you wanted to do this recipe and you don’t have a lot of time, you can make the sauce the night before and in the morning brown your meat in a pan and place the meat and prepared sauce in a crockpot, cook on low 6 hours.
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Thank you again ~ Patty Limatola-Tanenbaum