Christmas Chili


Obviously this chili is cooked, yet it tastes so fresh. I wonder why? “Very good”, Steve said. “Very French”. Serve by itself or over orecchiette (hat shaped pasta). Over rice too! It’s all good. The “very” categorizes it as special! And yes, it’s even low-fat. It didn’t have to be; that’s just the way it happened. Merry Christmas!

Makes 12 cups

2 T. extra virgin olive oil

1 lg. sweet onion, diced

1/2 green pepper, diced

1/2 sweet red pepper, diced

1 stalk celery, diced

1 t. pink Himalayan salt

1 c. peeled carrot matchsticks

1 sm. zucchini, diced – about 6 inches long and 1 inch diameter

1/2 c. TVP (textured vegetable protein) I used Bob’s Red Mill brand – soaked in boiling, salted water till plump (only a minute or two will do)

15 oz. whole kernel Gold Corn including liquid from can – I used FULL CIRCLE brand

15 oz. can dark red kidney beans including liquid from can

28 oz. can petite diced tomatoes

2 t. onion powder

2 t. garlic powder

2 t. smoked paprika

2 t. dried basil

1 t. ground coriander

1 t. ground cumin

1/4 t. ground allspice

1/4 t. red cayenne pepper

2 t. liquid smoke

2 c. V-8 Vegetable juice

6 oz. can tomato paste

fresh grind black pepper to taste

salt to taste

In extra-large soup pot, over medium heat, melt olive oil.

Add onion, green and red peppers, celery and salt. Saute till celery is half-wilted.

Add carrot and zucchini. Saute till zucchini is half-wilted.

Add remaining ingredients, stirring after each addition. Bring to soft boil, then reduce heat and cook for about 30 minutes, stirring as needed.

Notes: Half-wilted, means essentially halfway to a medium tender.

Steve doesn’t like a lot of cumin and neither do I, so I keep it in the shadows of the flavor profile whenever I do use it.  Once the chili is seasoned as directed and you taste it, then make the minor adjustments you require.

This is perfect for us, using the type of ingredients we have available. No two people will make the same recipe the same way. Make it perfect for you is the goal – without ruining it. Chuckle.


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