Bomb ass chili
Nov.02.09 § 3 Comments
Me and Chingy and Snoop Dogg were hanging out a lot when I first tasted this chili. Just kidding, but I had been listening to Holiday Inn — a song I will now burst into anytime a Holiday Inn is within my vicinity— right before I tasted this for the first time. The reaction I mustered was, “You got that bomb ass chili.”
I said this to Claire who, for the second post in a row, is the inspiration for the soup. She cooked this one for us four roommates on Halloween in 2008, when we lived in a old duplex house with wood paneling in every room except the bathroom. I hate wood paneling, but I liked that house. We went our separate ways at the end of that lease. In 2009 the separated roommates reconvened on Halloween out of tradition, and we ate this chili.
This recipe is about protein. It’s packed with beans, nuts, a meat substitute, and a generous portion of veggies. It was designed by someone in an issue of Hallmark magazine for people whose children had stopped eating meat. Protein will not be sacrificed! The recipe is also about the togetherness of our old clan. It is a recipe that was passed to me as a result of eating with friends, who at the time had become like family to me. It represents how cooking for people and eating with them brings us closer together, and how making a house a home is done by making something warm in the kitchen.
2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups chopped broccoli (fresh or frozen)
2 cups chopped bell pepper (about two large peppers)
3 heaping tablespoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more to taste)
1 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 package veggie crumbles (we use Quorn)
1.5 cups raw cashews, chopped
1 15 oz. can chick peas
1 avocado, sliced
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup chopped scallions
1 lime, cut into wedges
This is another recipe where it helps to have your mise en place, or your ingredients all chopped and set up beforehand. A chopper is helpful for the nuts, as using a knife can be tricky. Another note about the nuts: originally this recipe called for roasted salted cashews but I used raw simply because that’s what I prefer. It makes no difference really, except it cuts down on the salt a little. Also, if you use frozen broccoli, make sure to blanch the florets first so they can be chopped and ready to toss in the pot with the beans, nuts and “meat.”
Heat a large soup pot or Dutch oven on medium heat. Add the oil and sweat the onion for five to seven minutes. Add the pepper and broccoli (if using fresh, otherwise add the frozen toward the end) and continue cooking for another few minutes. Add the garlic and seasonings, toss for about 30 seconds to one minute, then add the cans of tomatoes and stir.
While the tomatoes are heating up, rinse and drain the chick peas. Once the soup returns to a simmer, add the frozen crumbles, chick peas, broccoli (if frozen) and chopped nuts. Stir to combine. Continue to simmer for about 10 minutes to allow flavors to meld, while you may be preparing the garnishes or putting on your halloween costumes, dying your hair in the bathroom, carving pumpkins, having a mixed drink, handing candy out to little kids, going out on a beer run, etc. Just don’t forget to come back and eat it, of course. It’s a meal not to be missed!
Oh and here’s this, just for fun.