1 1/4 pounds ground beef
85% lean
1 tbsp water
1/4 tsp salt
a few grinds
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp dried thyme
7 ounces whole peeled tomatoes
about half a can
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 half onion
chopped fine
2 cloves garlic
1 cups water
1/4 tsp sugar
1 tbsp cider vinegar
finely chopped
In this scaled down version of the Cook's Illustrated chili recipe, the portion is smaller and the seasoning is lighter. Spicy elements have been eliminated. This recipe is perfect for babies who have already been introduced to solids (about 8 months old). The meat is so tender they can easily chew it with their gums. Plus the meat consumption helps with their iron intake. :)
Move the oven rack to the bottom middle position. Preheat the oven to 275°F.
In a large bowl, combine the ground beef with the water, salt, pepper, and baking soda. We usually wear latex gloves and massage the meat to combine. Rest for 20 minutes.
Prepare the spice mix. Combine the cumin, garlic powder, and coriander in a small bowl.
Grind the oregano and thyme in a mortar and pestle or equivalent to break it up into even smaller pieces. Add to the spice mix.
Puree the tomatoes and reserve. We usually use our immersion blender for this task.
In a dutch oven, warm the vegetable oil over medium high heat until shimmering. Add the onion. Stir and cook for about 5 minutes until softened.
Add the garlic and cook for about 1 minute.
Add the beef mixture. Mix and brown for about 10-12 minutes or until fond begins to form on the bottom of the pot. Use a wooden spoon to stir and break up the meat into pearl-sized pieces.
Add the spice mix. Stir and cook for about 1 minute or until fragrant.
Add the tomato puree, water, and sugar. Scrape in as much fond as possible. Bring to a boil and then cover and transfer into the oven.
Cook in the oven for 1.5-2 hours. Stir occasionally. The chili will thicken and the meat will get super tender.
Rest the chili, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Then mix in the vinegar.
Top with finely chopped cilantro and serve.
source: adapted from Cook's Illustrated