Spicy Beef Chili with Apples

There’s are a couple of things that all chili recipes have in common: First, everyone thinks theirs is the best, and second, only your  imagination can inhibit the number of different ingredients that a chili can contain.

Speaking of unusual chili ingredients, I spotted one this past week. Apples were one of the key ingredients in a chili recipe that came my way from Associated Press Food Editor J.M. Hirsch. He said that he uses apples in his Spicy Beef Chili to moderate the heat of the dish. He said that “it’s a bit unorthodox, but the flavor is wonderful (and doesn’t smack of apple at all).”

He also added that turkey and bison are fine alternatives to ground beef in the tasty-looking recipe, which I’m sharing here today.

Spicy Beef Chili with Apples
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 pounds ground beef
2 large cooking apples, peeled, cored and diced
1 large yellow onion, diced
6-ounce can tomato paste
3 cups chicken broth
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
In a large saucepan over medium-high, heat the oil. Add the paprika, chili powder, cumin, oregano, garlic powder and cinnamon. Cook, stirring constantly, for 30 seconds. Add the beef and cook until browned, about 6 minutes.
Add the apples and onion, then saute for 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste, broth and vinegar then bring to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Yield: Serves 6.
Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 390 calories, 47 percent of calories from fat, 21 grams fat (7 grams saturated), 100 milligrams cholesterol, 19 grams carbohydrates, 33 grams protein, 5 grams fiber, 940 milligrams sodium.