Hungarian-Style Chili with Polenta

I love Rachael Ray. I have 3 of her cookbooks and I'm just now getting into them. This recipe is hers.
This was my first time cooking with polenta and, I must say, I'm hooked! So delicious with the gouda cheese. I will definitely make this dish again (many more times!) Nick loved it, too. I cut the recipe in half and it was perfect for the 2 of us (Nick even had leftovers for lunch the next day). YUM-O!

2 tablespoons EVOO :)
2 pounds coarse ground sirloin
1 red chili pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
1 1/2 tablespoons smoked sweet paprika
1 teaspoon dried marjoram
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 quart beef stock
1 1/2 cups water or chicken stock
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup quick cooking polenta
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup shredded Gouda
1 cup sour cream
Finely chopped fresh dill, parsley and chives for garnish

Heat a large pot over medium-high to high heat. Add beef and brown 7-8 minutes. Add hot pepper, bell peppers, onions and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Cook to soften vegetables, 7-8 minutes more.

Stir in chili powder, sweet paprika and oregano. Add tomato paste to pot and stir to combine, 1 minute. Add stock to pot and bring chili to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cook 15 minutes more.

In a separate pot, bring water or chicken stock and milk to a boil, whisk in polenta and cook 2-3 minutes until thickened. Stir in butter and cheese, season with salt and pepper.

Fill shallow bowls with polenta, make a well in the center. Fill well with ladles of chili and top with herbs.


  1. I made this for the first time two weeks ago and am making it again this weekend. Fabulous!!!

  2. So glad you liked it! It's definitely one of our favorites!


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