Monday, November 8, 2010

Chilly Night for a Warm Bowl of Vegan Chili

Blog #6 for the vegan MoFo 2010 Challenge!

Close friends of ours have been having a rough couple of months. As a friend, there is not much I can do except be there to listen. Things have gotten a bit overwhelming for them and we decided to make them a comforting dinner. I had been planning on doing it for a while, but then a sign up was started and I knew it was my cue.

The two are not vegetarian, but have expressed an interest in eating vegetarian more. A while back, they were trying to incorporate two vegetarian meals into each week. So, I was excited to make something for them that they could add back in when things in life improved. After hemming and hawing about what to make, I settled on a veggie chili and cornbread muffin biscuits (both vegan, of course). Even though I can't eat foods containing gluten, I don't mind making them for others.

We have some wheat flour leftover from my gluten days, so I decided to make the biscuits with wheat. At some point I will try them with a non-wheat flour. I followed the recipe found in Vegan Brunch for Cornbread Biscuits. As I was making them, I imagined what they would taste like. When they were finished, I gave one to John to taste so that he could make sure they were decent before passing them on to our friends. He really enjoyed them and asked for another. I said no.

Then, it was on to the chili. A friend suggested that I make traditional chili with just beans and not veggies because it would mirror meat chili. I thought about it and then decided not to go that route, I added veggies! I was sure to be careful to accommodate their allergies and likes. One is allergic to mushrooms and the other does not like peppers. We had some vegan Bocca crumbles in the freezer from my gluten eating days and wanted to use it for this chili and for our friends. I used it as the last ingredient so that I could taste it throughout and make sure the flavoring was right

Here is my recipe:
  • 32 oz of chopped tomatoes, with the juice
  • 3 oz can of tomato paste
  • 1 cup of corn (frozen or fresh)
  • 2 zucchinis, chopped
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 1 large onion
  • 3 tbs chili powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 15 oz of black beans
  • 8 or 12 oz package of Boca vegan burger crumbles
Place all of the ingredients, except the beans and crumbles, into a soup pot, cover, and simmer for an hour. Add beans and simmer for an additional 30 minutes. Test seasonings and add more as you desire. Add in burger crumbles, stir, and serve!

I tried the chili without the crumbles and really enjoyed the flavor. John tried it with the crumbles and also enjoyed it. I gave it to my friends and the next day and the day after they informed me that they liked it quite a bit! I was so excited! They even rationed out the biscuits so one would not get more than the other. That made me smile.

I was so glad to give them a little bit of comfort, warmth, and friendship in this meal.


GiGi said...

Food is a wonderful thing to share with a friend. (from your heart and hearth)

Jenny said...

This looks like a wonderful chili to warm up with on these cold nights. Thanks for sharing