On a side note: Peanuts are also very common in authentic mole sauces, and sometimes enchilada sauce, which is why I always make my Mexican sauces at home. And peanut butter is often used in chili, as well. We are very careful about the Mexican food we eat out. Always ask for an allergen menu if you are allergic.
The primary spices in this chili are allspice, coriander, and a basic red chili powder - all common to central Mexico. The chocolate fits seamlessly into the blend and adds a luscious, slightly bitter mouth feel. (I use unsweetened Baker's Chocolate from Canada which is safe for those with peanut allergies.) To balance the bitterness I add a handful of raisins, chopped very fine. The combination is perfect. This dish is all about layers upon layers of complex flavours simmered together slowly. I made this batch in the slow cooker, but it can just as easily be made in a heavy pot on the stove top. Serve with warm skillet corn bread, traditional Mexican-style tortilla chips, or a rolled flour tortilla. Top with crumbled queso fresco.
Mexican Winter Chili with Chocolate
1 Tbsp coconut oil
1 lb organic ground beef or bison
1 small white onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
3 cups cooked black bean (2 cans, drained and rinsed)
15 oz organic, diced fire roasted tomatoes
1/3 cup raisins, chopped finely
1 Tbsp tomato paste
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp red chili powder
1 cup beef stock
1/2 oz unsweetened Baker's chocolate, chopped (half of one square)
Crumble and brown the meat in the coconut oil. When the meat begins to caramelize add the onions and garlic and cook, scraping the bottom of the pan, until the onions are soft. You want to develop as much flavour as possible so cook until the meat is quite brown. Transfer the mixture to a large slow cooker and stir in the remaining ingredients. Cover and cook on high for 1 hour, then turn the slow cooker to low and cook for and additional 4 - 5 hours.
Alternately, heat a large, heavy pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat. Proceed as above. Cover and simmer gently for 2 - 3 hours.
Skillet Corn Bread
1 1/4 cusp all purpose flour
3/4 cup corn meal
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup milk
5 Tbsp butter, divided
Place a 10 inch cast iron skillet in the cold oven. Preheat the oven and the pan to 375 F (190 C). Melt 4 Tbsp of butter, and set aside to cool. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, corn meal, sugar, baking powder, and salt. In a small bowl whisk the milk with the egg. Stir the milk and butter into the flour. Carefully remove the hot pan from the oven. Place the remaining tablespoon of butter in the pan and quickly spread it around with a pastry brush. Pour the batter into the pan and smooth the top. Place back in the oven and bake 25 - 30 minutes, until the top is golden and firm. Cut into 8 - 10 wedges and serve warm.