moose & wheat berry chili

good to the grain

Grains are a true blessing up here. With fresh vegetables difficult to rely on for nutrients, we find ourselves utilizing grains, in all their different guises, to provide us with the vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals we miss out on when our fruit bowl is empty and the fridge houses only a few soggy broccoli stems.

moose chili

Sure, whole grains have a myriad of benefits; reducing risk of type 2 diabetes (which is a big issue around here), heart disease and cancer (I just learnt that cancer is the greatest cause of death at the moment. Cheers cancer-inducing, chemically laden commercial food…); and of course they help with weight control being low in calories and high in fibre.

But, to be honest, we love’em cause they taste good and keep us satiated!

wheat berries and moose

Moose & Wheat Berry Chili
Recipe from Good Housekeeping – GRAINS
Serves 4

Jesse cooked this chili using pressure cooked wild moose; a jar of which was given to us by our good friends. Although the meat was already cooked, he simply pan fried it briefly to brown it. The final product was like pulled pork – meat so tender it shredded into the chili.

2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 pound moose stewing meat, cubed
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves
1 1/2 tablespoons ground ancho chile pepper (or any chili powder)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 small can (200g) diced tomatoes
3/4 cup low sodium beef broth
1/2 cup wheat berries (whole wheat kernels)
1/2 bottle dark beer (Jesse used a traditional dark ale)
1 slice bacon (optional – we’ve found it pretty hard to find bacon here that fits into the ‘real food’ category)
1 bay leaf

sour cream (natural yogurt works fine) and sliced green onions

1. In a large nonstick saucepan, heat 1 teaspoon oil over medium high heat until hot. Add the meat and cook until browned on all sides. Remove from pan and set aside. Heat remaining oil and add onions. Cook until golden, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds. Stir in ancho chile, cumin and 1/2 teaspoon of salt; cook 1 minutes. Return moose meat to pan; add tomatoes and broth. heat to boiling over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 1 1/2 hours.
2. Meanwhile in a smaller saucepan, combine 1 1/4cups water, wheat berries, beer, bacon, bay leaf and a pinch of salt; cover and heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, 1/2 hours. Drain wheat berries, reserving 1/2 cup cooking water (or whatever remains). Discard bacon and bay leaf.
3. Stir wheat berries and reserved liquid into large pan with moose. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until tender, about 15 minutes.
4. Serve chili with the sour cream and sliced green onions.

moose and wheat berries

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