Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Black Bean Chili with Vegetables

I usually take a few moments on New Year’s Day to, if not review the whole year, to at least review the last few weeks. Last year, I reviewed my “blissful” Christmas season. This New Year’s day, I am reflecting on 2012 as a whole.

My family went through some major changes in 2012, but we are blessed. I will always miss my father, but I had a close relationship with him, and I will always treasure the weekly lunches we shared in the last few years. I am also very proud of my daughter who did well her first semester in college.

While this year’s Christmas season was not quite as blissful as last year, I did love having my daughter home from college, and we did spend some time with friends and family over good food!

Now, I’m busy trying to get rid of all the sweets lingering in the house, and my meal planning is getting seriously healthy!

This black bean chili recipe is another holdover from our vegan Lent, and we all love it. It is full of vegetables, and has a rich flavor and an almost meaty texture. The chili is delicious topped with some avocado and cilantro, or if you aren’t vegan, top it with a little cheese and sour cream.  

Black Bean Chili with Vegetables
Printable Recipe
Adapted from Appetite for Reduction by Isa Chandra Moskowitz
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped, small dice
1 green bell pepper, seeded, chopped, small dice
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 large carrot, chopped, small dice
1 pound zucchini, chopped, medium dice
1 cup frozen or fresh corn, defrosted if frozen
2 cups vegetable broth
3 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
dash of freshly ground black pepper
1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 15 ounce cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
2 teaspoons agave nectar
Juice from one lime

Heat oil in a large Dutch oven. Add the onions and bell peppers, and cook until the onions are translucent, about 4 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for another minute. Add the chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, cayenne and black pepper, and cook stirring constantly until the spices are fragrant. Mix in the carrots, zucchini and corn. Add the vegetable broth. The vegetables should be mostly submerged.

Bring the mixture to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer, covered, until the carrots are tender and the zucchini is soft, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, black beans and cilantro. Cover and cook until the mixture is slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Mix in the agave and lime juice. Add more salt to taste if needed, and serve.

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