HALEEM CHILI (for eight)



3 medium red onions, quartered, plus ½ red onion, thinly sliced, for serving

4 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped

1 or 2 jalapenos (cored and seeded if you prefer a milder spice), roughly chopped

a 2 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped

7-1/2 cups water

¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons canola oil

12 green cardamom pods

6 whole cloves

3 dried red chiles

1-1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds

1 inch piece of cinnamon stick

1 teaspoon coriander seeds

¼ teaspoon whole black peppercorns

2 tablespoons kosher salt

2 teaspoons ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon turmeric

2 pounds ground beef (preferably 85% lean)

1 cup steel cut oats (or ¾ cup yellow split peas or 1 cup rice)

chopped fresh cilantro, for serving

lime wedges, for serving



1. Place the quartered onions, garlic, ginger and jalapenos in the bowl of a food processor, pulse to a coarse puree and set aside.

2. Place ½ cup water next to your stovetop. Heat ¼ cup canola oil with the cardamom pods, cloves, chiles, cumin seeds, cinnamon, coriander seeds and whole peppercorns in a large pot over medium high heat until the cinnamon unfurls, 2 to 2-1/2 minutes. Add the pureed onion mixture and salt and cook for 15 minutes, stirring often, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pot and splashing the pot with water if the onions begin to stick.

3. Add the ground coriander, ground cumin and turmeric and cook for 1 minute. Mix in 2 tablespoons canola oil, the ground beef, oats and 4 cups water. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to a simmer, cooking until the pot is fairly dry, 10 to 15 minutes. Add 3 more cups of water and bring back to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Remove the lid and cook for 5 additional minutes. Serve with sliced onions, cilantro and lime wedges.


from Suvir Saran, American Masala

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