My husband has been a hunter since childhood. Because of this, even in our dating life, Tom supplied me with a new meat, venison. Blissfully unaware, I was a bit hesitant to try this gamey meat. It is now among my favorite meat “mediums”! I love trying it in new dishes and seeing its flavor played out in so many different ways. Here is my first attempt at chili!
- Olive Oil
- 2 lbs ground venison
- Salt and pepper
- 2 medium onion, diced
- 4 large garlic cloves
- cayenne pepper
- dried oregano
- 15 oz. can beans, rinsed and drained
- 28 oz. can diced tomatoes
- 28 oz. crushed tomatoes
- 6 oz. tomato paste
- 10 oz. bag frozen corn, thawed
- Sprig of celery leaves
- Grated mixed cheese, for serving
Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Brown the ground venison, breaking it up with a fork, until cooked through. Season the beef with salt and pepper to taste. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the venison to a paper towel-lined plate.
Tomato Sauce: In separate pot, heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Dice 2 garlic cloves and lightly simmer over low heat until soft. Add crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, and sprig of celery leaves. Refill used can of crushed tomatoes with water so that there are equal parts of crushed tomato and water. Add to sauce. Season with salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, and oregano to taste. Let simmer.
Using a medium sized pot, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the onion, and garlic and sauté until softened. Season with dashes of oregano and cayenne pepper. Add the browned venison, beans, diced tomatoes, 2 cups tomato sauce, and corn. Reseason with salt and pepper. Let simmer for 30 minutes.
Ladle the chili into serving bowls and top with a sprinkling of cheese.