Wednesday, November 7, 2012

3 Bean Chili

Unlike my Red Chile recipe, which is a sauce, this is the kind of chile-with-an-i that pretty much came out of a can when I was a kid. Rich, thick, and beany, and totally non-carne, it's well worth the bit of extra effort it takes to make it yourself. While chili is not exactly a soup, it's kind of in the soup family, like a cousin maybe, and it's another big bowl of comfort that's easy to throw together on a chilly night... pun intended. I've been tweaking this recipe for years, and I'm really happy with it now. My two special secrets for this are to roast the spices in the beginning, and to add the beer instead of water or more broth. Both lend a lot of depth to the flavor of the finished chili.

3 Bean Chili
1/2 cup chili powder (I use part mild, and part medium, so I don't hurt anybody with the spice. You can always add more heat to the bowl later with hot sauce or red pepper flakes.)
1/4 cup cumin
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp garlic powder
1 beer
1 large onion, chopped
1/2 cup organic corn flour
4 cups vegetable broth (1 - 32 oz. box)
3 cans diced tomatoes with their juice
2 cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
3 T tamari
1 tsp salt, or to taste
2 cups frozen corn

In a large pot, dry-roast the chili powder, cumin, cinnamon, and garlic powder over medium heat, stirring constantly for about 2-3 minutes, being careful not to burn the spices.

Add the beer and onion, and cook over medium heat until the onion starts to soften - about 5 minutes.

Add the corn flour gradually, stirring constantly. It will form a thick paste.

Gradually stir in the broth, then add the tomatoes, beans, tamari, salt, and nutritional yeast.

Bring to a simmer, and cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring often, to blend the flavors.

Add the corn 5-10 minutes before serving.

Serve with a topping of vegan cheese or sour cream if you like, and cornbread, or any other bread you prefer.

Variations - Serve chili over rice or quinoa. Add crumbled tofu or Boca Burger along with the onion, for a more "con carne" texture. Add more vegetables, such as zucchini, carrots, or greens.


Ellen OB said...

Oh, great idea roasting the spices beforehand. Hadn't thought of that myself! And most people are surprised at the corn flour (I use real masa harina). It is what makes good chili into great chili. I use the rest of the masa to make those little corn cakes called gorditos to go along with the chili. This recipe is chock full of good ideas- now I must wrestle that last beer from the Hubby for the chili pot!

Kim Miles said...

Heu Ellen - how about sharing your recipe for gorditos? :o) Please? If it needs veganizing, I can do that.