Esquire Fortnightly's Eastern Establishment Chili

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  • 2 cups dry kidney beans
  • 1/3 cup olive oil or 1/3 cup lard
  • 1 (5 pound) beef brisket, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 large onions, coarsely chopped
  • 6 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 green bell peppers
  • 2 tablespoons dried basil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tablespoons ground mild red chile
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Chile Caribe
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons Masa Harina
  • 6 cups canned tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup freshly brewed coffee
  • Salt
  • Black pepper, freshly ground


  1. Place the beans in a bowl, cover with water and soak overnight.
  2. Pour the beans and the water in which they were soaked into a heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, then lower the heat and simmer, covered, for about 1 hour or until tender. Stir occasionally.
  3. Heat the oil or melt the lard in a large heavy casserole over medium heat. Pat the brisket dry and add it to the casserole. Stir the beef until it is quite brown on all sides. Remove it from the casserole and set aside.
  4. Add more oil or lard to the casserole if needed, then add the onions and garlic and cook until the onions are translucent. Stir in the green peppers, basil, bay leaf, ground chile, cayenne pepper, Caribe and cumin. Cook for about 1 minute, then add the Masa Harina and cook 1 or 2 minutes longer.
  5. Return the brisket to the casserole and add the tomatoes and their liquid. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 2 hours. Stir occasionally.
  6. Stir in the salt and black pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings. Add the coffee and simmer, uncovered, for 1 hour longer.
  7. Add the kidney beans to the chili. Simmer, uncovered, for another 1/2 hour.

Yield: 10 servings

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