Mar 28, 2010

recipe: nic & kyle's vegetarian chili

(Originally emailed Apr. 2, 2008)

our recipe!
our recipe!, by LG Weddings

I've added two new people to the list. Julie, from my lab (I've added you in case you find some recipes for your sis or for CR), and Dane who I know from Laurier people (hey, you said you wanted a recipe!). The background info: I (try to) send out a vegetarian recipe every week, seeing as Kyle and I usually try at least 1 or 2 new recipes per week, and I hope that someone out there actually finds something they like.

Today I will share with you my recipe for vegetarian chili. I grew up with my mom's chili recipe: simple, tasty, hearty, but full of meat. And it turns out that it doesn't work well as chili when you just omit the meat. I have tried time and time again to make vegetarian chili and it nearly always ends up tasting "off" and being overly liquidy. So I did some investigative work (including Wikipedia and some recipe sites), plus some trial and error, and finally settled on a vegetarian chili recipe I like. Kyle says it's the best food I make. I don't have a meat substitute in it (I've tried it and I didn't like it), but you could always try that if you wanted. I usually serve this chili with a dollop of sour cream and some shredded cheese. If I'm feeling fancy, I'll chop up some avocado and mix it with lime juice and serve that over top of the chili. I guess green onions would also work as a garnish. We make fresh french crusty bread for dipping.

Some comments from now me (as opposed to me writing in April of 2008). I was searching for this recipe today and I couldn't find it (can't find any recipes in our recipe box since I decided to "re-organize" it. Grr. Then I checked my second go-to spot: my blog! And I realized to my astonishment *gasp* that I haven't posted our chili recipe. As you've already read, Kyle and I developed this recipe together, but the other cool news about it is that we served it at our wedding! The caterer at the Toronto Zoo (Compass Canada) was really great about it and they made our chili for us. How cool is that?

Now as it turns out, Kyle and I have different methods of making this chili. And... his tends to end up better than mine. So I'll intersperse the Kyle Method below.

dinner buffet!
our recipe!, by LG Weddings

Nic & Kyle's Vegetarian Chili
Ease: 1 very easy
Time: 3 somewhat quick (quick to throw everything in a pot, but long time to let it simmer)
Ingredients: easy to get
Source: my mom, plus inspiration from various places

crockpot chili, by me

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 chili or jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
  • 2 large cans diced tomatoes
  • 2 cans kidney beans
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tbsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 1-2 splashes red wine
  • 1/2 tbsp oregano
  • 1 squeezed lemon (or about 2-3 Tbsp of lemon juice)
  • few grinds/shakes of black pepper
  1. Saute garlic, onion and pepper in a bit of oil for a few minutes - until fragrant and onions are soft. But don't brown garlic.
  2. In crockpot or slow-cooker, combine remaining ingredients and add onions and garlic.
  3. Set crock pot to high until chili starts to boil, then turn heat down.
  4. Boil for several hours. Throughout the day, scoop off the liquid that rises to the top and RESERVE. Do this before you stir it because it's easier. (Kyle method: don't scoop off liquid until the very end)
  5. Before serving, mix some (> 1 Tbsp) cornstarch into the mug of reserved liquid and add gradually back into the chili until the chili is thick.
  6. Serve with sour cream, shredded cheese, lime-y avocado cubes, etc. Also, fresh bread.
  7. Yum.

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