Chili Con Carne . . .

You won't find beans or tomatoes in a true Texan chili con carne—just tender cubes of beef and pork, fiery chiles, and plenty of garlic, onion, oregano, and cumin for flavor. A little bacon fat gives this one a rich and smoky undertone.


6 large dried guajillo chiles
6 dried chiles de arbol
2 tbsp. rendered bacon fat
1 lb. beef shoulder, cut into ¼" cubes
1 lb. pork shoulder, cut into ¼" cubes
5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
1 tbsp. dried oregano
1 tbsp. ground cumin
1 tbsp. flour
1 ½ cups beef stock
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1. Place both chiles in a bowl and cover with 4 cups boiling water; let sit until softened, about 30 minutes. Remove chiles from water; discard stems and seeds. Transfer chiles to a blender along with soaking liquid, and purée until smooth, at least 30 seconds. Set chile purée aside.

2. Heat bacon fat in a 6-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat. Add beef and pork, and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned all over, about 12 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, push meat to the perimeter of the pan, and add garlic and onion to the center of the pan; cook, stirring, until soft, about 2 minutes. Add oregano, cumin, and flour, stir ingredients together, and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add reserved chile purée and stock, and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low, and cook, covered partially and stirring occasionally, until meat is very tender and sauce is reduced slightly, about 1 hour. Season with salt and pepper and serve ladled into bowls.