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Mar 22, 2007 03:14 PM

Looking for GREAT Chile Colorado Recipe, Plz.

Looking for an authentic recipe using beef & dried, not powdered chiles.



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  1. Don't know if the OP is still around, but here's a very good chile colorado with beef recipe:

    Just like I've had it in Mexican restaurants many, many times - chiles, beef, NO beans, no (or little) tomato. Almost a cliche norteno immigrant dish. To improve add or substitute other medium heat Mexican varieties - ancho, pasilla (negro), guajillo.

    I would add a little garlic and maybe some cumin. OK to have the powdered version of the chile on hand to adjust the heat.

    1. Moose, I had posted my Pork Colorado recipe awhile ago, sounds like you're up for the challenge, its is an all day project. I make it the same way with Beef Chuck Roast, you want a fatty cut of beef for the flavor, so although this reads, pork, use the beef instead.

      Spicy Pork Chili Colorado Burritos
      Put half of the following seasonings, herbs and aromatics, into the bottom of a crock pot setting on high: onions and etc. on the bottom of the crock pot or your pot.
      The other half will go on top, I do it this way to ensure flavors get to the bottom of the pork roast while it begins to cook the first few hours since its frozen.
      You will need:
      20 large fresh flour tortillas or corn..
      4-5 lb Pork Butt or whatever cut you prefer bone or not.
      1 Large (huge) Onions White or Yellow
      6 Large Cloves Garlic – Sliced – they break down
      Chicken Broth – Use homemade broth or canned, 2 Serrano Chilies – Seeds and membrane left in chop fine.
      Best done the night before, put into a crock pot –and on the bottom, 1T olive oil, 1⁄2 of the onion sliced, 3 cloves of garlic sliced, 1T Mexican Oregano crushed in your palm, 1tsp dried basil, 1 T onion powder,1T garlic powder, 1 1/2 T ground cumin,1 T Knorr’s Caldo de Pollo, pepper and salt - taste it first.
      Add the pork butt. 1/2 cut up stalk of celery, the other half of the onion, the same measurements for the dry spices, only not the cumin, and add 6 cups of chicken stock. The aromatics, place on the top the tomato chopped coarsely along with the chopped Serrano.

      Red sauce - use can use whatever combo, this is mine.
      Dried Chilies – wash them well, remove all the seeds and membranes
      3 Ancho
      4 Pasillas
      4 Guajillo
      4 T ground California Chili
      3-4 cups of the broth from the pork to soak the dried chilies. Soak for about 45 minute or until really nice and soft/pliable. You don't want any pieces left in the sauce.
      This stuff can be messy, be careful to let it cool first. Then using a ladle, put into a blender,(cover it with a towel) add the now pliable chilies and 2 cups of broth, whirl, add more broth adding 2 Tables of ground chili powder to the chilies. 2 cups of tomato puree, blend. Keep adding chili powder until you like the consistency. Should be on the thick side, a thick darkish sauce.( This is like the mother sauce to add to the pork broth. Run the chili sauce through a sieve, then add the chipotle pepper blend, then 2 small cans of Salsa Casera and blend again.
      Set aside to cool it will naturally thicken as it cools.
      Once the pork is done, remove it from the crock pot – strain the broth through a fine sieve or cheese cloth into a bowl, remove the aromatics you only want broth. Put it back into the crock pot, add the chili sauce to the crock pot, to thicken sauce quickly whisk in a little masa or flour and water slurry place heat on high to thicken. Once the sauce is thickened, salt and pepper is to your liking,
      Cube the pork if you want to make pork Colorado burritos or you can leave it whole and cut pieces when you break it apart inside the crockpot,
      Place the whole pork roast or cubes back into the pot with the sauce until ready to make burritos or tamales and turn on low. Or simmer on stove top.
      The hardest part now, is keeping everyone out of the pot at this point.
      I use flour tortillas that have been warmed. You can make them plain, or add:
      avocado, fresh tomato, cilantro, white onion, cheese, beans, rice, or whatever makes you happy. My favorite is cilantro, tomato, onion, avocado, cheese, picked jalapenos and a tad bit of sour cream.

      Another way is to add a carrot or two towards the end of the cooking, and serve it as a stew, then just eat it with buttered flour tortillas.... great late night snack!

      14 Replies
      1. re: chef chicklet

        Looks like great recipe but a bit all over the place - do you have a clean version of this with master list of ingredients? HOPE SO - LOOKS GREAT!

        1. re: koly33

          No I don't this recipe came together from observation, and my own personal changes. Cooking this is a large project, and I really don't have the time to rewrite this right now. Once the sauce is made, the hardest and messiest part, the pork will cook itself. You might add a few other things to adjust seasonings.

          1. re: chef chicklet

            Oh its not that hard. I like to cook the meat with the chiles.

            about 10 dried chiles (what kinds depends how hot you want it)
            1 big onion
            4 cloves garlic
            2-3 fresh or fire roasted chile peppers (again how hot do you want it)
            big can stewed tomatoes (pureed if you want it smoother or leave out if you want)
            4 lbs roast (cut into chunks if you want to speed up the cook time)
            1-2 T each mexican oregano, cumin, black pepper
            salt to taste
            ground chile powder to taste
            4- 6 cups beef broth

            Break stems off dried chiles & shake out loose seeds. Cover in water & soak until soft, then remove seeds & ribs & blend with soaking water until smooth. Season meat with salt & pepper then brown in oil in stewpot. Add chopped onion, garlic, fresh chiles & spices. Saute until onions are done. (transfer now to crockpot if you want & use slightly less broth) Add tomatoes & dried chiles. Add enough broth to cover. Cover pot & simmer on low until fall apart tender. Shred meat if desired. Uncover & cook down to desired thickness. Check seasonings & add ground chile powder if needed. Can be thickened further with masa flour slurry just before serving.

            1. re: tullius

              wow you're much better at that than me! I feel like I must tell every single little step for fear they'll miss something. I practically where most of the sauce by the time I'm done.

              1. re: chef chicklet

                If you break the dried chiles up you can probably fit them in the blender to do the soaking. Maybe that would save some mess. Since you strain yours anyway maybe you don't need to remove the seeds & ribs before blending? This would increase the heat of course, so you might want to use a higher proportion of milder chiles.

                1. re: tullius

                  Oh but tullius, I've been making this for years. I learned from a Mexican couple and we cooked all day. I love the texture, being smooth straining the sauce, pureeing til its perfect, and burning my hands.

                  The chiles are soaked cleaned first (no seeds no stems or tough membrane) in boiling water for quite awhile. The problem with not rehydrating them properly is that they never puree. I know, I've rushed it and then there are bits of leatherey pepper in the sauce.
                  And besides I really don't mind the time I spend making it. I make tamales too, and if you've ever done that it can run all day. Of course you know one doesn't just make 12 tamales, you make 50 or so.

                  1. re: chef chicklet

                    I've also used a foodmill to separate rehydrated pulp from the skins.

                    1. re: paulj

                      Those work great, I'd love one for Christmas, so many uses. I hear it makes the best mashed potatoes too.

                      1. re: paulj

                        paulj, I need to get one of these, I also hear they work wonders on mashed potatoes. Do you use it for that and soups too? I need one.

                        1. re: chef chicklet

                          A couple of days ago I did two things with the food mill:

                          - puree rehydrated chiles

                          - puree steamed squash for pumpkin bread. This was the relatively dry kabocha squash, and I left the skin on during steaming.

                          I use an immersion blender more often for soup - if there is plenty of liquid and I don't need to separate seeds, skin or fiber from the puree.

                2. re: tullius

                  This looks good except for the tomatoes. There are no tomatoes in real Chile Colorado. I do like that you cook the meat with the chilies though, as chile Colorado is a stewed dish it makes sense that you impart the chile flavor into the meat. I always toast the chilies first for a little more depth. If you use whole cumin seed you can toast those before you crush or grind them also. Being born in New Mexico, I am used to "real" chili. I live in Indiana now and everyone calls chili: some beans and stewed tomatoes with a dash of chili powder and fried hamburger. Makes a fair soup but it isn't chili!

                  1. re: Hoosiersmoker

                    I lived in New Mexico, what "real chili" are you speaking of? Is chili even a Mexican or New Mexican dish? doubt it. I know that while I lived there, I couldn't get good Mexican food to save my life. I did like the green chile, that was untouchable.
                    Chile Colorado is made in many ways, as is chili. This debate will never end, and the whole idea of "real" or "authentic" is just not valid. I've had good chili, good chile colorado, and I still like mine best. Recipes originate from family to family, they'll always vary. I think another thing I've heard is that chili doesn't even have beans - right?

                    1. re: chef chicklet

                      Wow! I see I struck a nerve chef chicklet! My intention was not to say you are wrong but only to add information as you did on Chile Colorado according to my own experience. If I've offended you I apologize. I was merely posting information from my experience for the benefit of anyone that wanted it. So with that, Moose, IN MY OPINION chile Colorado has no tomato and IN MY OPINION "real" chili has no beans, they are a condiment, not an ingredient.

                      1. re: Hoosiersmoker

                        Ha ha! No not a nerve and not offended in the least. I just want to see people keep contributing is all and with some harsh statements people that are new won't post again and we all lose. For years when we go out for Mexican food, my two favorite things to order are, Chile Rellenos -which I also make, and Chile Colorado - Because I love it, and order just to see how good it is (could be better-ya know).
                        Unfortunately, I don't see any other posts from you, so I have nothing for which to base what you claim. I would love to see your recipe for Real Chile Colorado, maybe I've been missing out on something Hossiersmoker. Will you share it?

                        I know there are quite a few people that feel strongly about beans in their chili. I do love it both ways. I've had a great spicy Texan chili, no beans made with steak. Used real chile, ground and toasted their own. We can all use another great chili recipe, I know I can!

          2. Here's the chili I've got brewing right now. And I think it's going to be excellent.

            3 T. Aleppo Chile Powder
            1 T. Aji Mirasol Powder
            2 T. Datil Pepper Sauce
            2 ½ lbs. Chili Grind Beef
            3 T. Vegetable oil
            8 Cups Beef Broth
            ¾ T. Oregano
            2 t. Garlic Powder
            2 t. Cumin Powder
            1 Jalapeno
            1 Can Tomato Sauce
            4 T. Onion Flakes
            1 T. Worcestershire
            ½ T. Thyme

            1. Heat vegetable oil in stock pot and brown beef in it.
            2. Add 3 cups broth, Aleppo powder, Worcestershire, oregano, one teaspoon garlic powder and jalapeno. Bring to a boil and simmer uncovered for an hour and fifteen minutes.
            3. Add remaining broth, thyme, one teaspoon garlic powder, cumin, tomato sauce, datil sauce, and onion flakes. Remove jalapeno and squeeze juice into pot. Simmer uncovered for one hour.
            4. Add aji mirasol powder and simmer uncovered for fifteen minutes.

            PS--You can buy the peppers whole and powder them if you like.

            PPS--I don't use salt because the Better than Boullion, which I use to make the broth, has plenty. Moreover, I only use 3 t. of BtB per 4 cups of water.

            1. I guess for me this has been a great chili to go from. I have made a few little tweaks here and there but for the most part this is a fairly simple recipe for what I think of as a Colorado Chili. Feel free to add more or less of things (I always do! ; ]} ) Thanks to chef chicklet for prompting me to post the recipe, I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

              Hoosiersmoker’s Colorado Chili

              3 dried New Mexico chilies
              4 dried Ancho chilies
              4 dried passilla negro chilies
              5 C beef stock divided
              3 – 5 lb beef chuck roast
              1 TBSP Mexican oregano
              2 TBSP cumin seeds
              2 TBSP ground Coriander
              kosher salt
              black pepper
              olive oil
              5 garlic cloves minced
              1 large yellow onion, chopped
              Cilantro chopped (for garnish)
              Sour Cream
              Canned or home made Pinto beans or Black beans

              Heat 3 C of the beef stock hot but NOT boiling. Remove stems and, for milder spice, remove seeds from all dried chilies. In a DRY frying pan over med high heat press chilies down with spatula and toast all of them until they start to give off aroma but do not burn them. In a heat safe bowl place chilies and cover with hot stock (boiling stock can make chilies bitter). Weight the chilies down with a small glass or ceramic plate if you’d like. Let soak for 20 – 30 min until tender. Place chilies and 2 C of the liquid (reserving the rest) in a blender and puree until smooth. Add more reserved soaking liquid if desired to make a nice thick sauce consistency. Press through a strainer to remove any unwanted bits. In small skillet toast the cumin seeds lightly over medium heat being careful not to burn them. Let cool and grind or crush well with mortar and pestle. Cut beef into 1” chunks. In a large skillet sauté the onion in olive oil until just translucent then add the minced garlic and cook for another minute, Remove the onions and add beef to the pan and brown the beef well on all sides. In a large pot add the beef, onion mixture, chili paste, cumin, coriander and oregano. Salt and pepper to taste. Add balance of reserved soaking liquid and remaining 2 cups of beef stock. Cover pan and bring to a boil then reduce the heat and cook for 3 -4 hours or until beef starts falling apart. If too thin, remove lid and allow to reduce and thicken. If you happen to have smoked a pork shoulder just before making this chili, use it as the meat instead of the beef. The smoky flavor is perfect for the chili. Also for a flaming hot version: Leave the seeds or add them after straining puree. Marinate 2 lbs of a good, hot chorizo in 1 large bottle of Tabasco sauce for 24 hrs and fry before cooking the onions de-glazing the pan with some of the reserved soaking liquid. Add 4 minced jalapeno or 2 habanera when combining all the ingredients. Heat the beans and serve on the side with the sour cream and cilantro.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Hoosiersmoker

                I like that you are as heavy handed with the spices as I am. I think it really does make the difference in the outcome. Most of my friends are too timid, think I made a mistake with the amounts of seasonings, and then complain that it doesn't taste like mine.
                I like it to simmer all day, the meat is so tender, and that way the sauce darkens so that its a rich dark color.

                This one with the habanero chiles most be smoking hot! I'd eat it~

                1. re: Hoosiersmoker

                  I know- this is not chile colorado. But i'm hoping that you might be interested in it anyway, seeing as how you go in for labor intensive SERIOUS cooking! it is the single most labor intensive dish that i make. But i'm offering it to anyone crazy/passionate enough to make it someday!

                  MEXICAN SMOKED PORK STEW

                  Pork Shoulder, 8-9 lb.,bone-in
                  Brined 8 hrs., smoked 5-6 hrs, cooled, defatted, cut in 1⁄2 - 3⁄4 “ cubes ***

                  8 c. pork stock made from pork shoulder bones,etc.
                  Cooked 8 hrs., strained, cooled, refrig’d,de-fatted

                  1 6 lb. can pastene plum tomatoes, strained,smoked 2-3 hrs., chopped ***
                  1 6lb can “” “””””, strained and chopped
                  Some of the remaining juices/sauce from these canned tomatoes
                  Rendered Pork or bacon fat- 1/2 c.

                  2 lb. Portuguese chorizo, halved,sliced, sautéed til fat is rendered

                  3 lg. onions (12-14 OU.@), smoked 2-3 hrs., chopped and
                  sautéed in chorizo fat &/or bacon fat ***
                  1 lg onion, chopped and sautéed “”””””””””””””” ‘’’’’ ”””””””
                  1 head of garlic, separated, peel on, smoked 2 hrs., peeled, minced, sautéed as above

                  2 tsp + dry oregano, rubbed to release flavor
                  1/3 c. pureed canned chipotles en adobo

                  8 c. peeled and cubed buttercup squash( 2-3 @ buttcup squash)
                  tossed in some oil,s and p, and roasted 450 degrees 5-8 min til edges browned and just done.

                  In 15 qt heavy pot, heat together the onion, chorizo, garlic, cubed pork.
                  Add remaining ingreds. except squash. Bring to boil, turn down and simmer
                  15 minutes. Add squash, adjust seasoning ( likely more chipotle puree, tomato or oregano.) Simmer 10 min.

                  Makes 45 cups

                  *** I use a smoker that has a separate chamber for the fire.I have used hickory for the smoking chips.I smoke tomatoes, onions, garlic, on disposable half sheet pans that have been riddled with holes using a skewer.
                  Smoked bone-in pork shoulder, in a plastic bag, stays fresh and fine at least 2 wks in the frig. This stew freezes very well. This must be about the only savory dish I make that has no added salt or pepper!

                  This is adapted from Pork with Smoky Tomato Sauce from Rick Bayless’ Authentic Mexican.