Sunbear's Overnight Baked Chili

Here is the recipe for the prize-winning chili (first place, 2000; third place, 2003). I worked on it for around a year, starting in 1999. around a year; the prize-winning exemplars were not even the best exemplars of the recipe.

The critical element is really the cooking technique: the pot of chili gets baked for six hours in a 250 degree oven. I decided this would be worth trying with chili because strega had been making baked beans that got cooked overnight. The long, slow cooking period results in tender chunks of pork and virtually no risk of burning because the heat is uniform around the pot. You don't have to mind it for hours and hours, and there's plenty of time for the flavors to develop.



How to do it:

  1. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.
  2. Grind enough chilis to wind up with 12 to 15 tablespoons of chili powder.
  3. Chop the onions and garlic.
  4. Cut up the pork shoulder into small pieces.
  5. Sautee the onions and garlic in vegetable oil.
  6. Add the pork and lightly brown it. This will take a few minutes, depending on how much pork you have.
  7. Add the chili powder and salt to taste; stir thoroughly.
  8. Add the can of tomatoes; stir.
  9. If you're sure it's necessary, add a few ounces of broth to ensure that there is enough cooking liquid, but you probably won't need to. I could have omitted this.
  10. Add at least half the can of chipotles (more if you like).
  11. Set the oven timer for six hours.
  12. Cover the pot and put it in the oven.
  13. Go to sleep. The chili will be done when you wake up.