My friend Matt Gocher, who gave me the original non-cheat recipe, is positively one of the country’s leading chilli experts. Here, the chilli is cooked very slowly and, rather than being served with rice, it has five accompaniments: pinto beans (not kidney), grated cheese, raw onion, saltine crackers and soured cream. Here goes.
Delia's How to Cheat at Cooking
500g cubed braising beef
1 large onion, peeled and quartered
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 heaped teaspoon coriander seeds
1 heaped teaspoon cumin seeds
1 heaped teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 heaped teaspoon La Chinata or El Avion smoked hot paprika
350g jar Dress Italian tomato sauce with red pepper and chilli
400g tin Tarantella organic pinto beans (Co-op)
110g ready-grated mixed Cheddar and mozzarella (Sainsbury’s)
150ml carton soured cream
Ritz crackers or saltine crackers
1 large red onion, peeled, quartered and chopped in a mini-chopper
Start off by adding the beef to a medium-size flameproof casserole. Now chop the onion and garlic in a mini-chopper until quite small and add these to the meat.
Then crush the coriander and cumin seeds with a pestle and mortar (or the back of a spoon) and add these along with the cinnamon, paprika and seasoning.
Finally, pour in the contents of the jar of sauce, then quarter-fill the jar with warm water, put the lid on, give a good shake and add that too. Now bring it all up to simmering point, stirring. Cover with a tight-fitting lid, turn the heat down to its lowest and barely simmer for 4 hours.
To serve, heat the pinto beans in their own juice, drain and rinse them with boiling water and transfer to a warmed bowl.
Place the other ingredients in cold dishes, serve the chilli in warm bowls and let everyone help themselves to whatever combination they want. (Matt says you break up the crackers and scatter them in as well.) He likes it hotter, so if you do too, add some chopped piri piri chillies.