Simmer up a winner!

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Need to feed a crowd? How often do you get to serve up a blue-ribbon winner

This chili recipe from Chef John Maxwell took top honors in the State Fair of Virginia’s 1996 chili championship.

Maxwell hosts the “Heart of the Home” cooking segments on Real Virginia, Virginia Farm Bureau’s weekly television program. He’s a certified executive chef, a culinary educator and a member of the American Academy of Chefs.

Virginia Championship Chili Winner, 1996

2 pounds diced beef
1 pound diced pork
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 cup diced onion
2 tablespoons minced garlic
½ cup tomato paste
½ cup red wine
1 cup diced green pepper
1 cup salsa
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons ground cumin seed
2 chipotle peppers, minced
2 fresh ancho peppers, diced
1 cup strong coffee
½ gallon beef stock
2 cups par-cooked black beans
2 cups par-cooked Anasazi beans
½ gallon diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons dried oregano
1 tablespoon black pepper
¼ cup malt vinegar

In a heavy-bottomed stockpot, brown the beef and pork in the oil. Add onion and garlic, and sauté until the garlic is browned. Add tomato paste, and cook for 5 minutes.

Deglaze with red wine, and cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients, and cook for about 1 hour or until the meat and beans are tender and the sauce thickens.

Serves about 24.

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