December 21, 2010

Make this Veggie Chili

Saturday we had our first ever holiday party!  It was pretty fun if I do say so myself.  Yes, this does mean we skipped having Sunday pizza.  GASP!  Eh, it happens.  C made some yummy burgers (big beefy oniony burgers).  I love Seattle because it is always BBQ season here.

I wanted the party to be appetizers and desserts.  Naturally, vegetarian chili comes to mind.  ???  Typical.  Anyway, I decided it was definitely something people can eat standing up schmoozing and didn't look back.  The verdict?  Success!  (Phew)  
Finished Chili: droool

My mom has reminded me several times that I was SO lucky it turned out cuz chili was a risk for the following reasons (counting on fingers required):

1) I had never made this recipe before
2) Veggie chili always seems to be lacking something (ummm meat)
3) I didn't know if it would be too hot since kids would be there
4) It is a party and people are standing around and not wanting to eat chili (ok I don't know if she actually added this one but I thought about it)

Turns out this chili had just the right amount of heat. Even C didn't add hot sauce!  Yet, I *think* kids were able to eat it with cheese and sour cream added.  Plus, I added mushrooms to it which added to the beefy taste and I didn't miss meat one bit.  Finally, I also made meatballs for the party, covered in bbq sauce but whatevs.  People could technically add them to the chili if they wanted.  Wonder if anyone did...

The recipe below serves 6 to 8 people.  I quadrupled it for the party as shown in the photo.  Chili always has a million ingredients so don't be scared and my goodness get your spices from a store that carries them in bulk so you don't break the bank!

Missing from Photo: a bowl FULL of seasoning

Make this Veggie Chili Chili

2 tbsp Canola Oil
1 cup diced onion
2 cups red, orange, or yellow bell pepper diced
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
1/2 cup diced zucchini
1/2 cup mushrooms diced 
3-4 cloves garlic crushed
1.5 tbsp ground cumin (mmmm cumin)
1 tbsp ground coriander
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 tbsp New Mexico red chile powder (or cayenne)
1 tbsp Canned chipotles in adobo sauced (puree or finely mince the pepper)
1 28-oz can of diced tomatoes
1 tbsp Molasses
1 can pinto beans undrained
1 can black beans undrained

Preheat soup pot over med-high heat.  Add oil. Once shimmering add onions and peppers with a little salt. Saute for 3 minutes.  Add carrots and celery, lower heat to medium, and cook about 5 minutes.  Next add mushrooms and zucchini and cook another 2-3 minutes.  Add garlic and stir, then toss in all spices from cumin through chile powder in ingredient list. Cover and cook 5 minutes stirring occasionally to avoid sticking.

Add pureed chipotles with adobo, molasses, and tomatoes and stir well.  Finally add beans (including their liquids) and gently stir.  Bring to boil, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.  You can eat it as is or with cheese, sour cream, and crackers.  Or as C's family does it - over macaroni noodles.  Or like my dad on top of a baked potato.  I served it with the optional toppings of cheddar cheese, sour cream, diced onions, and seasoned oyster crackers.  

Come an' git it!

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