As you may (or may not) know, DH and I have entered the local Chili Cook-Off contest for the last couple of years. Unfortunately that event was held the same day as Jay's Daytona Party. And since free food (and beer) always win, we did not get to enter into the contest. Which is too bad because I had a kick-ass, sure as shootin' winner this year.
So, since we didn't get to enter, and since Alanna has called for an entry in her Soup's On! event, I decided to make the "chili" that I entered with last year to share with the world. (Lucky world!) It's not really chili in the strictest sense of the word. Come to think of it - not even in the loosest sense of the world. But since the contest rules didn't allow beans, I wanted to find a recipe that would not just be hamburger, tomatoes and hot peppers - or a variation of these.
One thing I discovered in my search for a recipe is that there are two different views of what "chili" is. It's either a soup or it's something you put over hot dogs. Since I'm of the soup persuasion, I needed to find something that was liquid, unusual and would knock your socks off. Oh - and win*.
Somewhere I found this recipe and it certainly was "different" to say the least. Before I committed myself to making this for the Chili Cook-Off, I looked up the definition of chili. All the dictionary had to say was that it was a type of pepper. Since this soup had pepper in it as well as hot sauce, I figured that was close enough and made up a batch to see how good it was before we entered it. I must say that it blew us away with it's taste!
Beef and Sausage Stew
1 lb. Chorizo (all Chorizos taste different - find the one you like)
1 lb. Beef Stew meat
1 14.5 oz can of beef broth
2 Tblsp. tomato paste
1 10 oz. pkg. white mushrooms quartered
2 celery stalks thinly sliced
4 cubes beef boullion
4 cups water
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. oregano
1 head cauliflower, halved, cored and cut into bit-sized pieces (about 4 cups) (yes - you read that right)
1 Tblsp. minced garlic
1 Tblsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. Tabasco sauce (about 4 shakes)
1. In a skillet over medium heat, brown sausage and stew meat until thoroughly cooked; drain off fat. (I use the fat from the Chorizo to brown the stew meat in. Why waste that flavor?)
2. In a slow cooker, whisk together the beef broth and tomato paste. Add all remaining ingredients as well as the cooked meat and stir together.
3. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 hours. Stir well before serving.
NOTE: Use as much boullion or beef broth as you need to make it the consistancy you like. I don't alter the flavorings even if I do use more. That Chorizo is spicy stuff!
*It didn't. It was a little too unusual for the judges. I for sure would have won this year though!