Warncke’s Wild Game Chili

2nd Place Winner in the TCEQ Chili Cook-Off: Wild Game Category!

Notes: I substitute 4 lbs of ground venison for the chili meat and used 1 T of maple syrup in place of the molasses.

1 pound smoked maple flavored bacon, chopped
1 tbsp. shortening or oil
4 pounds ground chili meat
2 onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, crushed
3 tbsp. chili powder
1 1/2 tsp. each-oregano and ground cumin
1 tsp. Cayenne
2 tbsp. salt (use 1 1/2 tbsp. first)
1 tbsp. molasses
2 (6oz.) tomato paste
1 (26 oz.) can chopped tomatoes with chilies
1 can beef broth
1 cup tomato juice

In Dutch oven:

Brown bacon and chili meat in shortening.  When all brown, drain all but 5 tablespoons of bacon/beef fat.   Add onion and garlic and cook until clear in bacon/beef fat.  Drain fat.  Return drained meat to pot and mix with sauteed onions and garlic.  Add all spices (chili powder, oregano, cumin, cayenne and salt).  Add molasses.  Mix all together well.  Add both cans of tomato paste, canned chopped tomatoes with chilies, beef broth and tomato juice.  Mix all of these ingredients together well.  Cover and simmer 1 hour stirring occasionally.  Uncover and simmer another hour stirring occasionally.  Cool.  Refrigerate overnight to marinate the flavors.

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