Chilli. Chilli can go a long way as a one-pot meal, and seen as it is the New Year I will give you a pretty healthy vegetarian chilli. This recipe is special for a few reasons.
First, its got a secret ingredient that will make you feel healthier than the lady in the Activia commercials, belly-dancing your way to work (Has anyone noticed her husband is now all ’bout dem probiotics too? Unabashedly masculine and regular).
Second, I made my own chilli blend by roasting chiles and then grinding them.
It was pretty exciting, like a middle-school dance for peppers oh they grinded (ground?). They grinded awkwardly in my tiny food processor. They ground into each other, gyrating themselves into a pulverized blush.
Anywho, I do think it makes a difference to do this. Plus you can use the rest of the powder for all future Mexican pursuits be they of the fajita, burrito or taco variety.
But I did lie just a litttle bit… because, I threw something turkey in the chilli. I know! But…but we had it in the fridge! And turkey tastes like corrugated cardboard anyway so it doesn’t really count and…well, the original recipe is in fact vegetarian. And…well..I hope this doesn’t entirely discredit me because I’m just looking out for you. I coulda lied.
Let me redeem myself by telling you what the secret ingredient is: Bulgur Wheat! I am a huge fan of bulgur wheat, as it serves to bind many a patty, bulk up many a salad and generally is a respectable and dignified grain. Bulgur’s got the poster-child hue of natural foods, you know what I mean right? That tan of hippie leather sandals, organic farming sun-kissed forehead–you catch my drift.
This recipe tries to draw out as many meaty flavours as possible by using ingredients high in glutamates (did I get that right?) which is a compound that makes things taste meatier. No, not ground turkey. You don’t need it. Even though I threw it in. I hope you know you can leave it out. Anyway, glutamate-rich foods are blended in the tomato sauce: soy sauce , toasted and ground up walnuts, shiitake mushrooms and tomato paste.
Look, I know I betrayed you a little bit. But…if you’re gonna make vegetarian chilli, this recipe is killer. And when you’re eating over the counter with your significant other, burning your tongues and dipping in chips, rolls, cheese, slurping up the hearty stew like a pair of hungry wolves, none of it will matter. My indiscretion is minor, and abated by this confession. Now get eating, you hungry pirate. This is a stew for the hard-working to drown in, and it ain’t so bad for you either.
-2 dried ancho chiles
-2 dried New Mexico Chiles—roasted and ground
-1 tablespoon cumin
-4 teaspoons dry oregano
-1 pound beans (whichever variety you prefer) soaked and drained
-2 large onions chopped
-1/4 cup vegetable oil
-1 28oz can diced tomatoes
-3 tablespoons tomato paste
-6 garlic cloves
-3 tablespoons soy sauce
– 1/2 cup toasted ground walnuts
-1-2 chopped jalapeno
-1/2 cup chopped shiitake mushrooms
-6 cups of water
-3/4 cup bulgur wheat
-1 can of corn
The pot goes into the oven at 300 degrees for about 3 hours.