This Bourbon Elk Chili recipe comes straight from Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
If you haven’t had chili yet this winter, now might be your last chance to make good on this all-time great hearty meal. I’m making this Bourbon Elk Chili from Jackson Hole’s Amangani resort for the Super Bowl because, well, it’s got game—literally, a pound of elk meat. Andrew Walters, the executive chef at The Grill at Amangani shared his gamely recipe with me, and I'm sharing it with you.
Now, I should also note that this recipe calls for beans, which technically makes it more of a stew than a chili—yes, I’m from Texas where chili was born and where chili has no beans. However, considering Texas doesn’t have a team in the Super Bowl, I’m branching out to other state chili varieties, being a good sport, and making chili with beans...and Bourbon.
Bourbon Elk Chili
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
1 yellow onion, diced
2 tablespoons Bourbon
1 lb. ground elk (we use Durham Ranch in Gilette, WY)
2.5 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons cumin seed
1 teaspoon cayenne
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1.5 teaspoons kosher salt, more to taste
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup beef stock
1 cup coffee
15 oz. can diced tomato, with liquid
8 oz. red kidney beans, drained
8 oz. garbanzo beans, drained
8 oz. tomato sauce
2 tablespoons maple syrup (we use Runamok Maple from Fairfax, Vermont)
2 oz. tahini
1 teaspoon instant coffee
Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat until shimmering, then add the onion. Sweat for 5 to 6 minutes, cooking gently, and avoiding any browning. Deglaze with the bourbon, ignite the flame to burn off the alcohol if necessary.
Add ground elk, stirring to break up the meat, and cook for 6 to 7 minutes. Season with chili powder, cumin, cayenne, sugar, garlic powder, salt, and tomato paste. Stir to thoroughly combine, then add beef stock, coffee, diced tomatoes, beans, and tomato sauce.
Stir and bring to a boil, then add maple syrup, tahini, and instant coffee. Reduce heat and simmer to meld flavors, 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and allow to rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.