Cowboy Chili a la Francaise



It had to happen one day and I’ve had it in the freezer for about 2 weeks, so today was the day.  “Pony Time.”


All my friends told me that if I wanted to cook horse meat it should be “chevaline” from a butcher who specializes in horse meat and not the ordinary horse meat that they sell in supermarkets.  Okay.  Chevaline is a darker meat than beef, not quite the bizarre, dark color of camel but definitely darker.


Not wanting to recklessly gallop into horse cuisine with my eyes wide shut, I thought it would be best to use the meat in a familiar way; hamburgers, meatballs, chili.  Chili was a good choice and you have the ole juxtaposition of horse/cowboy/chili thing going.  I found some rectangular cans of coco beans to reinforce the Frenchness of this bowl of the red.


Not as good as fresh coco beans, and I thought smaller, but these were good quality canned beans with diced tomatoes, sage and bay leaf.  Giddyap!


Chevaline Chili

2 tbsp olive oil

1 onion, chopped

2 large garlic cloves, chopped

1/2 red bell pepper, chopped

1 lb chevaline or beef, coarsely ground

4 tbsp good quality chili powder

1 tsp cumin

1 1/2 tsp oregano

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp black pepper

2 cans diced tomatoes

2 cups cooked/canned white beans

Fresh mild chillies, sliced

Scallions, sliced

Cheese, grated

Soften the onion, garlic and bell pepper in the olive oil, then add the chevaline and cook until all the red has disappeared.  Add the chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt and pepper, stirring for a minute or two.  Add the diced tomatoes and simmer for about 10 minutes.

Add the beans and continue to simmer for 20 minutes.  Ladle into bowls and garnish with fresh chilli, scallions and cheese.



About cookinginsens

An American living in Burgundy, France
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23 Responses to Cowboy Chili a la Francaise

  1. Mad Dog says:

    Yeehaw! Excellent, I hope you enjoyed it? If you did you must try the steak, IMHO it’s tastier than beef 😉

  2. Amanda says:

    Love all of the metaphors. Interesting chili. I’d be interested to try it,

  3. I’ve never seen horsemeat for sale here. My father, who grew up in wartime UK, says he doesn’t mind it. I don’t think it was sold as horsemeat, it was just one of those things he worked out later.

  4. Giddiup indeed my friend. How was it? Is it super easy to get horse over there?

    • The chili was good. Horse is a meat here in France like beef, pig and lamb. The chevaline horse meat is usually found at specialty butchers or weekly during the farmers’ market.

      • Hmmm… I’ve always wanted to try that stuff but it’s pretty hard to get hold of in Oz, even though we are one of the largest exporters of horse for human consumption in the world… What evs. I’ll fins it some day.

  5. Trish says:

    Don’t think I could do it – I love and have horses. I will stick to offal as my exotic meat of choice.

  6. marymtf says:

    Fond of chilli, love meat and can imagine that your recipe would be quite delicious with beef as you suggested, but I can’t quite get myself to add pony to my freezer or to my recipe repertoire even if it was available in Australia which it’s not. Of course, we have kangaroo here. I’ve never tried that either.

  7. jjbiener says:

    I live in the US, so trying horse meat will have to wait until the next time I travel abroad, which I am sure won’t be any time soon. I have tried a lot of exotic meats, so wouldn’t mind trying it. I will just have to wait.

    BTW, I already have the best chili recipe on my blog.

  8. Love the post and the photos

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