Meal Type: Main Course
Cook time: 60 Minutes
No need for a separate slow-cooker when you have an Aga range cooker! Prepare this flavoursome chilli in the morning and leave in the simmering oven all day – the meat will be beautifully tender. This is a great dish for feeding a crowd. I like to use chunks of meat rather than minced beef for a weekend-worthy treat! It works well with mince too though, if you prefer.
This is a fairly mild chilli – if you like it hot, add a tablespoon of mild (or hot!) chilli powder along with the cumin and marjoram! For a simple guacamole, simply mash three ripe avocados and mix with 2 chopped spring onions, a small handful of chopped coriander and the juice of a lime. Season to taste.
For a speedy salsa, dice the flesh of approximately 6 medium tomatoes and mix with finely diced red chilli, half a finely diced red onion, a little chopped coriander and the juice of half a lime. Season to taste.
Pre-heat a large casserole dish or ovenproof pot on the floor of the roasting oven for five minutes. Transfer to the simmering plate – add a slug of oil and then the onions. Fry gently for a couple of minutes, cover with a lid and place of the floor of the simmering oven for 20 minutes.
Whilst the onions are sweating, brown the meat in small batches. Heat an ovenproof frying pan on the floor of the roasting oven, add a little oil and fry either on the boiling plate or on the floor of the roasting oven, turning from time to time. Remove each batch with a slotted spoon and set to one side. When the final batch is brown, scrape out the pan (or deglaze with a splash of water) and add the juices/any crispy bits to the meat.
Transfer the pot of softened onions to the simmering plate – add the peppers, crushed garlic and chopped coriander stalks. Cook for a couple of minutes, until the pepper has just started to soften.
Next, add the cumin, marjoram and chipotle paste. Give everything a good stir and then add the meat. Add the tomatoes and stock – season well with salt and pepper.
Bring to the boil (you can transfer to the boiling plate, if necessary) – simmer for a few minutes before covering with a lid and transferring to the simmering oven.
Cook in the simmering oven for a minimum of 3 hours, preferably longer. 20 minutes before you are ready to serve, add the black beans and return to the oven for a further 20 minutes. Before serving, add the chocolate and, once melted, give a good stir. Sprinkle with freshly chopped coriander and serve with guacamole, salsa, soured cream etc.
Aga range cooker tips:
- This dish really benefits from long, slow cooking. After three hours, the meat should be falling apart and perfectly tender. The heat of the simmering oven is so gentle though that you can leave the casserole to cook for much longer if required, without it drying out. I often prepare this kind of dish in the morning and let it cook gently all day, ready to serve in the evening.
- I like to sweat the onions in the simmering oven so that I can get on with browning the meat. You can, if you prefer, sweat the onions on the simmering plate instead and set aside whilst you brown the meat in the same pan.
- All casseroles-type dishes lose very little liquid during cooking. When following conventional recipes, you may find you need to reduce the amount of stock/liquid when cooking in the Aga. If you find you have too much liquid, simply remove the lid and reduce the liquid with a quick bubble on the boiling plate or the floor of the roasting oven.
This fun family recipe has been scribed and tested by community member Antonia, who is a hard working mum with two boys. Her recipes are trialed in her much loved Aga range cooker and devoured by her family, allowing Antonia to provide accurate tips and advice on how to make the dishes a success! Go check her work out! She is a country girl, happily surrounded by an excitable Lab, her dear husband, two boys and the Cotswolds.