California Chili (Tasty Vegetarian Fare)

Welcome to the new and improved leggy cooks. If the revamp comes as a bit of a surprise trust me; I am as taken aback as you. This apparently is what happens when your boyfriends work calendar lightens up and he is left home alone for a few hours. New look aside, you’ll still find all the same tasty recipes that resided at the old site and hopefully soon there will also be some other interesting content to peruse.

Today’s post will be briefer than normal not because this delicious chili is unworthy of hyperbolic praise but rather because just as I was going to post I accidentally deleted everything I had just spent the past hour writing Argh! Even in cyberspace remodeling is not without a few hiccups. So without further ado her is a fantastic vegetarian chili with flavor so rich you won’t miss the meat! 

Black Bean and Butternut Squash Chili

Adapted from Jean Kelly

Bon Appetite Feb. 2011

1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

2 onions, chopped

8 garlic cloves, chopped

2 1/2 tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon ground coriander

2 14.5-ounce cans fire-roasted tomatoes

28 ounce can low sodium black beans

2 chipotle chiles from canned chipotle chiles in adobo, minced

2 teaspoons dried oregano (preferably Mexican)

Coarse kosher salt

1 2 1/4-pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 3cups)

1/2 cup quick-cooking bulgur

Sour cream

Coarsely grated hot pepper Monterey Jack cheese

Diced red onion

Chopped fresh cilantro

Pickled jalapeño rings

Heat the oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook until soft and beginning to brown, stirring often, about 8 minutes. Add garlic; stir 1 minute. Sprinkle chili powder and coriander over; stir 1 minute. Stir in tomatoes with juice, beans, chipotles, and oregano. Add 5 cups water. Bring to boil, reduce heat to low, cover with lid slightly ajar, and simmer until beans are tender, stirring occasionally, about 2 hours Season to taste with coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper. 

DO AHEAD

Chili can be made up to 2 days ahead. Cool slightly. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep chilled. Rewarm chili before continuing.

Stir squash and bulgur into chili. Simmer uncovered over medium-low heat until squash and bulgur are tender, about 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Divide chili among bowls. Serve with sour cream, cheese, red onion, cilantro, and pickled jalapeño rings and a frosty IPA yum!

Alternative slow cooker method: 

Brown onion and garlic as directed and cook along with spices. Transfer ingredients to slow cooker and add everything through water to the pot. Cover and cook on low for 4 hour or high for two. During the last 30 min. of cooking add in the squash and bulgur. 

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