Mom’s Mikma Chili and Bannock

My mom's recipe may sound like a basic chili except that traditionally she would use bison and it was never too spicy. When I smell it now, it takes me back to setting the table and us kids getting excited because we just knew it was going to be a good dinner. Everything in the fridge used to go into the chili, even raw apples. When the huge pot was placed on the table, all of us kids would dip into it with bannock or bread. I’ve recreated her recipe using two different beef cuts to achieve an almost-perfect replica. Enjoy.
Yield 4 Servings Prep. Time 20 min Cooking Time 60 min Total Time 80 min


Here are the following ingredients:

Beef Chili

  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) canola or sunflower oil
  • ½ cup (125 mL) EACH coarsely chopped celery, carrot and onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) salt
  • ¾ lb (375 g) Beef Blade Steak, cut into ¾-inch (2 cm) cubes
  • ¾ lb (375 g) Lean Ground Beef
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ tsp to 7 tsp (2 to 35 mL) hot pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) fresh cracked pepper
  • 1 can (14 oz/398 mL) EACH black beans and navy beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (28 oz/796 mL) crushed tomatoes


  • 1¾ cups (425 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) granulated sugar
  • ½ tsp (2 mL) salt
  • ¼ tsp (1 mL) baking soda
  • 1½ cups (375 mL) canola or sunflower oil

Shopping List

Here are the following shopping items to buy:


Follow these cooking methods/directions:

  1. Beef Chili: Heat oil over high heat in a large deep skillet. Add celery, carrot, onion, garlic and salt; cook, stirring often, for about 5 minutes or until just starting to soften. Add cubes of beef and ground beef to the pan and cook for about 10 minutes, breaking up ground beef with back of a spoon and turning beef cubes, until browned. Add bay leaves, hot pepper flakes to your taste, pepper, black beans, navy beans and crushed tomatoes. Cook, stirring often, for 15 minutes or until ground beef is completely cooked.
  2. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 45 to 60 minutes until beef cubes and vegetables are fork-tender.
  3. Bannock: Meanwhile, combine flour, sugar, salt and baking soda in bowl. Add ¾ cup (175 mL) water and fold together just until the mixture is shaggy and barely mixed (the trick is not to over mix). Let dough rest in a warm place for 15 minutes.
  4. Heat oil over medium heat in a heavy skillet until a drop of dough sizzles when added to oil. Drop dough by large scoopfuls into sizzling oil and fry for about 5 to 10 minutes, turning once, until both sides are deep golden brown and centre is cooked. Adjust heat as necessary to prevent burning. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate with a slotted spoon.
  5. Cut Bannock into halves and serve with hot Beef Chili.