21 December 2009

alligator chili

alligator hunting camp
photo: florida state archives

Prep Time: 1 1/2 Hours
Serves: 6

Although alligator is served only as an appetizer in sausage form at Lafitte’s Landing, I see it served in many ways around the state. The dish seems to have found renewed popularity over the past few years. Here is an old camp recipe.


* 3 pounds alligator meat, diced
* 1/2 cup oil
* 2 cups diced onions
* 1 cup diced celery
* 1 cup diced bell pepper
* 2 tbsps diced garlic
* 2 tbsps diced jalapenos
* 1 (16-ounce) can pinto beans
* 3 (8-ounce) cans tomato sauce
* 1 cup chicken stock
* 1 tbsps chili powder
* 1 tsp cumin
* salt and cracked black pepper to taste

In a heavy dutch oven, heat oil over medium high heat. Add alligator and sauté twenty minutes to render juices. Add onions, celery, bell pepper, garlic and jalapenos.

Sauté until vegetables are wilted, approximately three to five minutes. Add pinto beans, tomato sauce and chicken stock, bring to a low boil and reduce to simmer.

Add chili powder and cumin, stir well into mixture and allow to cook one hour, stirring occasionally.

Once alligator is tender, season to taste using salt and black pepper.

This dish is always served at hunting camp dinners over spaghetti. ~ chef john folse & company