This is somewhere between a stew and a chili, and is inspired by a recipe with a much fancier name than I’ve given it. It was originally called Carne con Chorizo y Papas (beef with chorizo and potatoes). Come to think of it, maybe my name is more fancy! The original comes from a lovely cookbook called The Mexican Slow Cooker by Deborah Schneider. I think it tastes great garnished with a few slices of avocado, but feel free to add a spoon of sour cream, some shredded cheese, or diced onion.
The recipe calls for three different kinds of dried chiles, and while that may seem overly fussy, it’s totally worth it. You should be able to find all three types in the Latino section of most grocery stores. Feel free to skip the chiles de arbol if you can’t find it or don’t want to buy all three. It’s job is to bring the heat, so sub it with some cayenne pepper to your taste.
It gets much easier from here – throw everything in the slow cooker and come back later to a delicious meal!
Mexican Beef and Chorizo Stew
- 6 guajillo chiles
- 1 ancho chile
- 10 chiles de arbol, or cayenne pepper
- 3 cups hot water
- 4 cloves garlic
- 3 medium sized Yukon gold potatoes
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 1 pound beef stew meat (chuck), cut into 1″ pieces
- 1/2 pound Mexican chorizo sausage (fresh, not cured)
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- Kosher salt, to taste
Begin by removing the stem and seeds from the dried chiles. Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat, then add the chiles. Toast chiles on all sides and remove from the pan. Tear or snip them into small-ish pieces and place in your super blender (hopefully you have a Vitamix or a BlendTec!). Add the hot water and let the chiles soak for 15 minutes. Pour off 1/2 the water, then add the garlic cloves to the blender and whiz it up until it’s very smooth.
Meanwhile, add the potatoes, onions and beef to a slow-cooker. Crumble the chorizo over this, removing the casings if needed. Pour the chile puree over the meat and sprinkle the oregano over the top. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours, stirring a few times if you’re home. Once the meat is very tender, stir and taste for salt.