Chilli con carne with coriander cornbread

Winter is the best time of year for slow cooking and I love it even more when I can cook everything in one pot in the oven for hours, warming the house and scenting the air (and clothes… and hair..!) with the delicious smells of dinner. The warming spices of this chilli con carne are mellowed by the crusty cornbread top which you can use to mop up the gravy. I think there are enough vegetables in this dish for it to be considered a meal, but a side of guacamole doesn’t go astray particularly if you have over-chillied the chilli which I have done before. I served this for dinner years ago and didn’t realise how hot the chillies in adobo sauce were, so I put in heaps and the resulting chilli was hot. Too hot for my friend Patty to enjoy, even with a mountain of sour cream and avocado. Oops… sorry Pat!

If you don’t have canned corn on hand, you can use fresh corn too. I have also substituted sun dried tomatoes (maybe about 150g) and parsley because when I went searching in the pantry for the corn I was SURE was there, it wasn’t, and I didn’t have coriander either. The chilli was in the oven and I couldn’t be bothered going to the grocery store so I made do with what I had.

If cornbread isn’t your thing, just make the chilli and serve it with rice, or corn chips, or tortillas… it’s all delicious. I hope you enjoy!



  • 800g oyster blade steak
  • 2 red onions, cut into eighths
  • 2 capsicums, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 tbs ground cumin
  • 2 tbs ground coriander
  • 1 tbs paprika
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 x 400g diced tomatoes
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained
  • chilli to taste (I have used jalepeno and chillies in adobo sauce, all delicious!)
  • 2 cups water or stock

Corn bread

  • 1 1/2 cups self raising flour
  • 1 1/2 cups polenta
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped coriander
  • 1 x 270g can corn kernels, drained
  • 1 chilli (or more) finely chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 50g butter, melted


  1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees C.
  2. Using a cast iron oven proof dish, cook the onion and capsicum in a bit of oil until soft. Remove and set aside.
  3. In the same pan, brown the steak in batches until nicely browned.
  4. When the steak is all cooked, add the garlic and spices to the empty pan. Cook for a few minutes, then add the steak, vegetables, tomatoes and water. Cover and put in the oven to cook for about 2 hours, or until the beef is super tender.
  5. While the meat is cooking, prepare your cornbread. Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl. In a jug, beat together the milk, egg and butter together with a fork and then add to the dry ingredients.
  6. When the meat is cooked, remove the pan from the oven. Remove the steak from the sauce and shred each slice with two forks, putting the meat back into the sauce. Add the kidney beans and stir through. Check the seasoning and add more chilli or salt if required. Turn the oven up to 180 degrees C.
  7. Dollop tablespoons of cornbread mixture on top of your chilli. Put back in the oven and cook for a further 20 minutes or so until the cornbread is cooked through.
  8. Serve the chilli and corn bread with sour cream and guacamole.

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