New addition to the Circle Z Ranch

We are thrilled to welcome Raymond Rivera as our new chef this season! Raymond has 20 plus years of experience in the kitchen, serving up meals at guest ranches, private homes, and remote wilderness camps. He loves building his creations from scratch, and is well versed in Mexican dishes, Thai cooking, Indian curries, traditional ranch dishes, and fine dining. He truly has the complete package, and will be eager to accommodate your dietary needs and desires. His cooking quickly won over the taste buds of our very finicky Circle Z staff, and we know he will not disappoint our guests.  Get ready for loosening your belts once again at the Circle Z! Here is a sampling of an award winning chili recipe!

Raymond’s Chili


2 Lbs. ground beef or boneless top round*

2 c. chopped yellow onion

1 c. each- red and green bell pepper

2 jalapenos, seeded and diced

4 cloves of minced garlic (about 1 tablespoon)

2 c. diced canned tomatoes (un-drained)

1 C. Tomato sauce

1 8 oz. can tomato paste

2 C. cooked pinto beans

2 C. cooked kidney beans

¼ C. ketchup

¼ C. chili powder

½ tsp. dried basil

2 T. cumin

¼ C. red wine vinegar

3 T. brown sugar

2 oz. dark chocolate

*(if using top round, freeze partially and slice against the grain, thinly.)


  1. In a large heavy pot, brown beef. Until browned, add onion and cook until translucent, but not brown. Add bell peppers, garlic and jalapenos.
  2. Stir in tomatoes, paste and sauce. Add spices, bring to a boil, and then add beans, ketchup and vinegar. Turn down to simmer.
  3. Cook for 30-40 minutes; stirring to prevent scorching and sticking.
  4. Stir in brown sugar and chocolate. Adjust heat by adding a little cayenne or another jalapeno.

Serve with chopped green onion and shredded jack or cheddar cheese.

Dec. 15, 2013

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