Chunky Beef and Syrah Chili

Chunky Beef and Syrah Chili

Adapted from the Syrah chapter of “100 Perfect Pairings: Small Plates to Enjoy with Wines You Love” by Jill Silverman Hough (Wiley, 2010)

Here’s a hearty, full-flavored chili, brimming with big chunks of beef. Light on the chile powder and heavy with herbs, it makes a perfect match for sometimes-herbaceous Syrah.

Serves 6

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 onions, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 1/2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 3/4-inch dice
  • Four 15-ounce cans dark (red) kidney beans
  • 4 cloves garlic, pressed through a garlic press or minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt, or more to taste
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried sage
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or more to taste
  • 1 cup Syrah, or other dry red wine
  • One 14.5-ounce can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 3/4 cup store-bought mild tomato salsa
  • 6 tablespoons sour cream

In a large saucepan or small stockpot over medium-high heat, warm the oil. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Add the beef and cook, stirring occasionally, until the beef and onions are brown, 6 to 8 minutes.

Meanwhile, drain the beans, saving the juices. Add enough water to the juices to equal 4 cups of liquid. Set the beans and liquid aside separately.

Add the garlic, chili powder, salt, oregano, sage, coriander, cumin, and pepper to the saucepan and cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 minute. Stir in the wine, scraping up any browned bits in the bottom of the pot. Stir in the tomatoes (with their juices) and liquid. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the meat is tender, about 1 hour. Stir in the beans and cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the soy sauce.

Taste the chili, ideally with your wine, and add more salt and/or pepper if you like. Serve hot, garnished with the salsa and sour cream.