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Frito Pie

Fripie can be served casserole or right bag corn chips. | Rich Hein~Sun-Times

Frito pie can be served in a casserole or right in a bag of the corn chips. | Rich Hein~Sun-Times

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Updated: October 20, 2012 6:03AM


This is one of six offerings on a Saturday-only, college ball-bent menu at The Southern.

3 dried ancho chiles

2 dried morita chiles

2 dried chile de arbol

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

6 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon ground cumin

¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon

1½ teaspoons dried oregano

3 pounds ground chuck

1 (14½-ounce) can diced tomatoes

1½ cups beer

Kosher salt


1 (9.25-ounce) bag Fritos

16 ounces shredded, smoked Cheddar

½ cup sour cream

2 limes, cut into wedges

Remove seeds and ribs from dried chiles. Heat a large, heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat. When it gets hot, toast chiles one at a time, laying them flat and pressing down with a spatula until they become fragrant, about 15 seconds. Flip and repeat on the other side. Continue until all chiles are toasted.

Transfer chiles to a small bowl, cover with hot water and steep for 30 minutes to soften.

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and garlic to pan and saute until soft and translucent, about 15 minutes. Add cumin, cinnamon and oregano and saute for another minute. Remove from heat and transfer onion mixture to a blender.

Drain soaked chiles but reserve soaking liquid. Add chiles to blender, along with about ¼ cup of the soaking liquid. Puree until it forms a thick paste, adding a bit more liquid if necessary.

In the same large pot used to cook the onions, cook the ground chuck, breaking up meat with a spoon as it browns. When meat is cooked, add the chile puree, along with tomatoes, beer, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, to taste.

Place half of Fritos in a bowl. Top with chili, followed by the remaining Fritos and Cheddar. Serve with sour cream and limes.

Adapted from Cary Taylor, executive chef at The Southern

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