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Vegetarian Chili

January 17, 2010

I’m just going to put this out there.  I am a die-hard barbecue defender. Here’s the components of my definition of the term:

  • a barbecue is not an appliance
  • barbecue is not an event (Hey!  Come over for a barbecue)
  • barbecue does not refer to hamburgers or hotdogs
  • smothering chicken in barbecue sauce does not make it barbecue

Here’s the kind of barbecue I grew up with:

  • it is only sold on Thursday, Friday, Saturday.  I suppose on Sunday-Wednesday they do the special things to the pig that makes barbecue barbecue and not just pork roast
  • That’s right.  Barbecue is PORK.  Not hamburger.  Not hotdogs.  Not chicken.
  • Barbecue is served out of buildings that look like this –

Yep, this is my old ‘hood back when meat was often and plenty in my life.  And it was served with hash.  Which you don’t really wanna know about.  And white rice.  And Sunbeam white bread.  And you drank Sweet Tea only.

I can’t help it.  That’s just what barbecue means to me.  And I’ll defend it from here to kingdom come.

I don’t, however, have the same opinion when it comes to chili.  So, while I’m a die-hard defender of the barbecue, I’m pretty slack about my definition of chili.  Others, especially from Texas (or so I’ve heard), however, are staunch about their chili.  The following meal would not even approximate what chili means to them.

So, if you must, call this Antioxidant Stew.  Because it is chock full of antioxidants.  Cooking Light calls it chili, though, so don’t blame me.

Vegetarian Chili (6 servings)
2 red bell peppers (these will be roasted, you could sub 1 jar roasted red peppers)
1 cup chopped onion
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 cups organic vegetable broth
1 1/2 cups (1/2-inch) cubed peeled butternut squash
1 (28-ounce) can no-salt-added tomatoes, undrained and chopped
1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15-ounce) can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions

Preheat broiler.

Cut bell peppers in half lengthwise. Remove and discard seeds and membranes. Place pepper halves, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet. Broil 15 minutes or until blackened. Place pepper halves in a zip-top plastic bag; seal. Let stand 15 minutes. Peel and chop peppers.

Heat a Dutch oven over medium-low heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion; cook 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in cumin and next 4 ingredients (through garlic); cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add bell peppers, broth, squash, and tomatoes; bring to a simmer. Cook 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add beans; simmer 25 minutes or until slightly thick, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle with green onions.

Nutritional Information (6 servings)
Calories: 264
Fat: 8.3g (sat 1.2g,mono 5.2g,poly 1.3g)
Protein: 9.5g
Carbohydrate: 40.9g
Fiber: 10.7g

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Wendy permalink
    January 18, 2010 10:13 am

    Amen on the true defination of barbecue! Now, you just have to settle the debate about which is better: Kansas or North Carolina style. This is one of the on-going debates in my marriage. I love North Carolina pulled pork, my husband is a Kansas City fan. We have a mixed marriage.

    The chili looks excellent.

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