Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Three Bean Chili

Here's another healthy recipe full of fiber that will make you feel better after eating it.  It's even vegan (if you don't add cheese or sour cream), but I always feel full after eating it.  I used to make this at church along with polenta for hundreds of people, and no one ever complained for the lack of meat (although more than a few didn't eat the polenta because they didn't know what it was).

I've taken the recipe from PETA and added three secret ingredients, adobo seasoning, liquid smoke, and chipotle peppers in adobo, to give it some real depth of flavor.  Well, I guess the ingredients aren't that secret anymore.  =)  Start with just a little bit of peppers, taste, and then add more because a little goes a long way.

The recipe is pretty forgiving.  I've had to substitute crushed tomatoes and whole tomatoes for the diced tomatoes before.  Once I even used salsa instead of some of the tomatoes, and it still turned out okay.  I've made this with dried beans before, but it's a lot easier to make it with canned beans.  The original recipe calls for 2 parts kidney beans to 1 part pinto beans, but I substitute a can of black beans in for half the kidney beans to give it more color.

Three Bean Chili (adapted from PETA)
serves 6

2 tablespoons canola oil
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup chopped white onion
Red pepper flakes, to taste
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon adobo seasoning
1 teaspoon oregano
1 bay leaf
28-oz. can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 1/2 cups vegetable stock
6 oz. tomato paste
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
16 oz. can pinto beans, drained
16 oz. can kidney beans, drained
16 oz. can black beans, drained
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
Chipotle peppers in adobo, chopped, to taste

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat.  Add the garlic and onion and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes.

Add the red pepper flakes, chili powder, and cumin and cook for an additional 2 minutes, or until fragrant.

Add the adobo seasoning, oregano, bay leaf, tomatoes, soy sauce, stock, tomato paste, and vinegar, then bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add the beans and simmer 15 minutes longer to heat through and blend flavors.  Add more water, if necessary, or cook longer to reach desired consistency.  Add the liquid smoke and chopped chipotle peppers and stir to combine.

You can serve this with shredded cheese, sour cream, avocado slices, and chopped green onions.  I like to eat this with Fritos, brown rice and lime-flavored tortilla chips, or fried polenta. You can find tubes of pre-cooked polenta at Trader Joe's and just slice and pan fry it.  The chili freezes well, so go ahead and make a big pot!

Three years ago:  Kettle Corn

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