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Chilli con Carne

Serves 10 people

This recipe uses:

Thatchers Gold

  • 4 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 kg coarsely minced, good quality beef
  • 250g cooking chorizo and 150g smoked streaky bacon, chopped
  • 100g pork skin (leave whole)
  • 2x400g tins kidney beans
  • 2 x 400g tins quality chopped tomatoes
  • 2 red onions and 2 carrots, finely diced
  • 1 bulb of garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tbsp each of cumin seeds and fennel seeds.
  • 1 large glass of red wine
  • 2 tbsp soft dark brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp hot chilli powder
  • 6 whole sweet red chillies
  • 2 tbsp oregano
  • 750ml water or stock
  • 4 bay leaves
  • Zest and juice of one small orange

To serve: Rice, chopped spring onions, natural yoghurt and grated mature cheddar.

Many crimes are committed in the name of Chilli con Carne, this recipe not only stands as the perfect partner to Thatchers ciders but as a testimony to quality, care and flavour. Though it is a quick dish to prepare it will take a while to cook – the longer the better – but keeps very well in the fridge or freezer so its worth making a big batch.

This dish is perfect for sharing at informal parties and gatherings, just crack open the cider and scoop up some chilli!


  1. In a BIG casserole pan or saucepan, start by frying the onions and carrots on a medium to high heat  for 5 minutes, then add the beef, a bit at a time.
  2. Slice the chorizo and toss this in, add the bacon too. Cook for 10 minutes, add the garlic, herbs, chilli and paprika, along with the whole spice seeds, cook for a further 5 minutes and season a little.
  3. Add the wine and cook out for 3 minutes until the wine acidity has been cooked out.
  4. Now add the tomatoes along with the water/stock, pork skin, and bring the whole stew to a simmer. Once simmering add the orange zest and juice, sugar and bay, along with as many whole chillies as you dare. Season with salt to taste.
  5. Stir and taste the chilli every 15 – 20 minutes whilst cooking on a low simmer for at least 2 hours.
  6. Add a little water if needed.
  7. Add the beans and cook for a further 20 mins.
  8. Once the dish is stewed to your satisfaction turn it off and let it rest for a while. Boil some rice, grate some cheese and I also like to garnish with natural organic yoghurt and chopped spring onions.