An unctuous Mexican Beef Stew with a touch of heat made with a Mole-style sauce and tender beef cubes served with tortilla chips, corn and parsley.
I was browsing the Web last week and saw lots of stews and Mexican food around… it made me want them both badly… so I’ve decided to merge them into one nice stew meal; a Mexican Stew. The two are comforting and fabulous dishes for winter times, but this stew version is double the comfort; it’s a “French” way stew with the usual; carrot, potato, beef, and mini french onions merged into a spicy Mole-style sauce for a Mexican flair; adding Chipotle peppers in Adobo, tomato puree, chocolate, corn and some cinnamon, cumin and coriander powder. Result: A fantastic Mexican Beef Stew!
The mole sauce is a thick spicy Mexican sauce made with chocolate and hot peppers. Since my maximal tolerance toward “spicy” is medium-hot, I’ve aimed at medium-hot for this dish as well but feel free to add more chipotle peppers if you like it “super hot.” Those chipotle peppers are mild, with only 3000 SHU / 10000 SHU on the Scoville scale, so this meal suits many. Plus, they come in an adobo marinade, a tomato, garlic and spices paste, fitting perfectly with the stew. Another particularity of the Chipotle peppers is their smokey notes since they smoked them before being marinated.
The Chocolate Factor
This isn’t a joke; dark chocolate is the best thickener for stews. Here are three main reasons why you need to use it:
- Because it’s an all-natural thickener, there is no need for that extra flour or starch to thicken the sauce.
- It gives the sauce this deep rich hazelnut colour, making it irresistible.
- Dark chocolate has plenty of health benefits; it lowers bad cholesterol, may lower blood pressure, is an excellent source of antioxidants, protects the skin from the sun, and even has an antibacterial effect on your teeth, etc.
Let’s say it’s excellent news for our general health. This Mexican stew doesn’t contain more than 50g of dark chocolate, although it looks like it contains lots because of its thick consistency. It’s half a small bar of dark chocolate, no more and no worries; the flavour is subtle.
The toppings are up to you; I wanted to make it extra Mexican looking, so I’ve added some corn grains, tortilla chips, and parsley. Those are all optional, of course. Also, I’ve boiled the potatoes on the side, but some people might prefer serving this dish with rice, which is usually the side dish to mole dishes in Mexico. So it’s all up to you!
Other fun Mexican Dishes
Mexican beef stew
- 500 g beef cubes (4cm )
- 500 ml beef broth (or chicken broth)
- 400 g tomato paste
- 50 g dark chocolate
- 4 canned chipotle peppers in Adobo (6 for more heat)
- 1 tbsp chipotle adobo paste (from the same can as the peppers)
- 8 mini onions (or one big one)
- 3 carrots (in small cubes)
- 2 garlic cloves (finely chopped)
- 2 tbsp olive oil (any cooking oil)
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 1/2 tsp coriander powder
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
- salt and pepper
- Corn grains
- Tortilla chips
- Boiled Potatoes (or rice)
- Start by seasoning the meat with salt and pepper, then in the big pot used for making the stew, brown each side of the meat cubes in olive oil on medium-high heat.
- Add the carrot, mini onions, and garlic, and cook for a minute before adding the beef broth and scratching the bottom bits left by the meat.
- Bring to a simmer.
- During that time in a blender, blend the Chipotle pepper with the Abodo paste it comes in and the tomato paste.
- Add the blended Chipotles to the stew with the spices (cumin, coriander, cinnamon, salt and pepper) and the Worcestershire sauce.
- Let it simmer slowly, half covered, for 1h30.
- In the end, add the chocolate and check the seasonning.
- Serve with a few corn grains, potatoes, parsley and Tortilla chips.