Fall into a bowl of veggie chili

Tuesday, 24 October 2017
It is so THAT time of year again. I love the fall season because I enjoy making soup and chili.

James and I enjoyed vegetarian chili with corn bread on Sunday evening. It is my go-to dish in the fall when I don't have a ton of time to cook dinner. We had just returned from Knoxville, Tennessee, for my friend Melissa's wedding, and I needed to put something together. I was tired after the six hour drive back and wasn't about to go to the grocery store. So, I headed to the pantry. (Sometimes I like to pretend that I'm on the Food Network show Chopped). Which ingredients do I have and what can I do with them?

I try to ALWAYS have canned tomatoes on hand as well as various types of canned beans. I checked the produce drawer and was happy to see carrots, onions, and garlic. I usually buy Hunt's petite deiced canned tomatoes with basil, garlic, and oregano. (We are finally out of fresh tomatoes and the garden has been tilled under.) I also had a can of Bush's navy beans and a can of Bush's great northern beans. 

This is an easy recipe that you can throw together in no time and let simmer. *Just use whatever spices you have in the cabinet. It doesn't have to be too complicated.

Denae's Vegetarian Chili

1/2 medium red onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, smashed and minced
6-8 baby carrots, chopped into small pieces
1 can navy beans, drained and rinsed
1 can great northern beans, drained and rinsed
1 can petite diced tomatoes
1 cup vegetable stock (you can use chicken), brought to room temperature.
1 T chili powder
1/2 t cayenne pepper
1/2 t cumin
3/4 t dried red pepper (I used Serrano.)
Dash of cinnamon
Salt and pepper to taste
1 1/2 T olive oil

In a large dutch oven or stock pot, heat olive oil. Add carrots and sautée over medium to high heat until they begin to get soft, approximately four minutes.

Add onions and sautée for an additional minutes. 

Turn heat to medium, add garlic and sautée for two minutes. Pour the tomatoes, including the juice, into the pan. Stir the mixture, scraping up any browned bits of onion, garlic, and carrots. 

Add drained and rinsed beans, stir. 

Add vegetable stock, turn heat to high and bring to a boil. Boil for four minutes, stirring almost constantly. Turn heat to low and simmer for at least 30 minutes. 

I served the chili with a boxed cornbread mix that I added a bit of corn kernels to. Toppings included grated cheddar cheese, hot sauce, and pickled banana peppers. ENJOY!

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