Beef Stewed with Chiles

This flavourful slow cooked dish can be served as a thick stew alongside rice & beans or on its own as beef and bean chili.

Makes 8 - 10 servings. 

Venezuelan Shredded Beef
  • 9 dried chiles (3 each of Guajillo, New Mexico, Pasilla) 
  • 3 lbs (1.36kg) beef sirloin, cut into 2 or 3 large chunks
  • dash of vegetable, grapeseed, or virgin olive oil
  • ½ onion, chopped
  • 1 can (284ml/10oz) beef consommé + 1 can water 
  • 3 Tbsp (½ sm can) tomato paste
  • 2 tsp ground roasted cumin
  • 1 tsp ground ancho chile powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp lemon juice
  • ¼ tsp grated lemon zest 
  • 1 can (114ml) mild green chiles, drained and chopped
  • 1 can (796ml/28oz) diced tomatoes with juice
  • salt and pepper, to taste 

Rehydrate the dried chiles: cut off the stems. Slice along their length and splay open flat. Remove any seeds and ribs remaining inside to cut down on bitterness. Place dried chiles in a small saucepan over low heat with add just enough water to cover the chiles; warm through for 20-30 minutes. Transfer chiles and water to a blender and puree until smooth.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a cast iron skillet or heavy bottom pot over medium-high. Brown the chunks of beef, turning to cook evenly. Don’t overcrowd the pan; cook in batches. Transfer the browned beef to a large slow cooker. Turn the heat in the skillet down to medium and add the onions, stirring often. When the onions have softened, stir in consommé and water and loosen up the brown bits with a spatula. Stir in the tomato paste, cumin, chile powder, oregano, lemon zest & juice. Transfer all to the slow cooker, pouring over the beef. Add the mild green chiles and diced tomatoes over top of the beef. Cover and cook on medium for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-6 hours, until the meat pulls apart easily with a fork. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Remove the beef and pull apart with forks. Serve the pulled beef like a stew in the chile-tomato broth.  Alternately, reduce the sauce and serve alongside rice and beans garnished with salsa. You can also return the pulled beef to the slowcooker, add beans and simmer until it reaches a chili con carne consistency.

Serve with cornbread and a pilsner

For some killer cornbread recipes, check out Best Ever CornbreadButtermilk Mexican Corn BreadNippy Zucchini Cornbread, and plain Zucchini Cornbread.

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