With the cold nights of fall and winter ahead, there are few meals that will warm you up like a nice hot bowl of venison chili. My wife has been making her absolutely fantastic recipe for chili for several years now, but we decided to kick it up a notch by adding a little smoky flavor. Here's how we did it.
What you'll need:
2 pounds of vension cube steak
Old WoodFire Grill KK's 10 BBQ Rub
1 packet of chili mix (we prefer to use Carroll Shelby's Original Texas Brand Chili Mix)
2 tbs butter
1 large bell pepper, chopped
1/2 large Vidalia or sweet onion, chopped
14.5 oz can fire roasted tomatoes in tomato juice
15oz can tomato sauce
2-15oz cans chili hot beans in chili gravy
1- 15oz can water
Hickory, pecan or oak chunks
Start out with a low to medium fire in your grill or smoker, around 250-300 degrees. I used the Weber Kettle for this cook, and used a chimney full of lump charcoal, only half lit when I poured it in, banked on one side to create a hot and cool side.I also added a piece of pecan to the coals to get a nice smoky flavor. Now normally when making chili, we would use ground venison, but I wanted to get a smoky flavor from the wood coals, so we elected to go with cubed vension steaks, smoke them and then chop them into ground consistency. Season the cubed vension with Old WoodFireGrill KK's 10 BBQ rub, and place them on the cool side of the cooking grate, opposite the coals. Place the lid on the Weber and position the vent so that it is directly over the meat, to draw the smoke over the cube steaks. Smoke the cube steaks at 250 for about 30 minutes.
Back in the kitchen, lightly saute the chopped onion and bell pepper in a skillet with the butter. Combine all the ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. When the vension cube steaks are ready on the grill or smoker, bring them in and chop them into a "ground" consistency. Notice the nice smoke ring!
Put the chopped vension into the pot with the rest of the ingredients, lower the heat and let it simmer for about thirty minutes, so that all the flavors can blend together. Serve up a bowl with cheese and sour cream on top, with a little chive for garnish.