Simon’s ‘hootin tootin’ EXTRA HOT fenland-style chili con carne!

I have been utterly blown away by the response of my previous post about my “hootin tootin”chili con carne, with half a dozen people already in the midst of cooking their own versions!

Here is an example of Callum’s version of the recipe.

I really love this dish because it’s a completely different take on the traditional chili con carne we all know and love. Its primary focus is on the flavour over the heat and moves towards a better cut of meat from minced beef.

That said. Being a chili con carne, it would be rude of me not to do a spicy version, so here you go!

Strap yourself in! 🔥🌶️ Let’s embrace the best of both worlds!


One whole supermarket brisket (this one was bought from Morrisons for a tenner!)

One pack of smoked bacon (6 rashers)!

2 tablespoons of chili powder, 1 tablespoon of cayenne pepper, 1 tablespoon of cumin, and 1 tablespoon of paprika.

One tablespoon of thyme.

2 cans of chopped tomatoes.

2 large white onions and half a head of garlic.

Scotch bonnet chilies.

Garlic and onion salt

1 can of kidney beans.

1 Oxo cube.

First, the brisket: During my last post I used a Sainsbury’s brisket which came to £15 and was a disappointing quality. This time I went for a Morrisons equivalent which was not only cheaper (coming to £10.45) but was a much better cut of meat.

I cut the brisket up into cubes and covered them in garlic and onion salt. I then placed the diced brisket into a dish and put it to one side.

I chopped the bacon into small pieces and fried it all with a very small amount of oil. I fried the bacon until it was crispy and had got most of the fat out of the rations. I then took the bacon out and left as much oil in the pan as I could. The reason for this was to fry the onions and garlic in the oil to give them a smokey flavour.

While the bacon was frying, I chopped up the two onions and garlic and threw them in the pan with the bacon. The fat turns them a lovely golden yellow, which really adds a smokey flavour to the dish.

I then added the chopped brisket covered in garlic and onion salt, which I prepared earlier.

Two tablespoons of chili powder, 1 tablespoon of cayenne pepper, 1 tablespoon of cumin, 1 tablespoon of paprika and 1 tablespoon of thyme.

Once everything has been cooking together for ten minutes or so, I added the spices and thyme. This gives the dish that really nice chili con carne colour.

Make sure to really cook the spices into the meat and singe it into the edge of the brisket, otherwise it will just wash off when the broth is added next nd it will lose that flavour in the meat.

Once the spices have REALLY cooked into the meat nicely, add the beef broth. I use an Oxo cube with two mugs of boiled water.

Let that simmer down for 10-15 minutes. This can take a varied amount of time but you do not want it drying out too much or having it too watery, so be careful!

It’s chopped tomatoes time! Two cans will do it. Add them in and let them also cook through to lose some of the liquid.

This is a good time to add the kidney beans and scotch bonnets too. I like to use Scotch bonnets, mainly because they are easy to get but I feel that they are a great balance between heat and flavour. Naga chillies would also be a good option.

Once the chopped tomatoes are thoroughly cooked through, add the bacon from earlier. Stir them in then let them cook into the dish for a few minutes.

Stick it in the slow cooker!

During my last post I put the dish in the oven for several hours. You may risk drying out the dish in the oven if you don’t check it frequently, so this time I used the slow cooker as it is a better option for keeping in the moisture.

If you feel the dish is too watery then use the oven, if you have it roughly how you like it then use the slow cooker. Generally speaking, I will use the slow cooker.


Thanks for reading!

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