For those of you not in the States or who live somewhere where “cold” equates to below 60F, send the majority of this country your temperatures. At this exact moment, I don’t actually now how cold it is outside. I would like to live in this veil of ignorance for a bit longer before the biting, bitter reality hits.
So let’s think warm thoughts.
And to me, warm thoughts start in a bowl. A soup bowl, that is. Today’s recipe comes from Kellie Anderson’s blog Food To Glow, and it is super (and not solely because it was indicated as an ideal accompaniment to a Super Bowl celebration, and in her case, introducing this epic-Americana event to a foreign crowd).
Black Bean Quinoa Chili
Serves 4 to 6
1 tbsp olive oil
1 red onion, finely diced
3 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 medium sweet potato, scrubbed and small dice
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 red or green pepper, deseeded and finely chopped
2 bay leaves or 2 kaffir lime leaves (I use 2 whizzed up lime leaves)
1 ½ tbsp mild chili powder (the kind that is a blend)
1 heaped tbsp dried oregano
2 tsp ground cumin
3 400g (14.5 oz) tins of black beans, drained but not rinsed
1 400g (14.5 oz) tin of good quality tomatoes, or 4 tomatoes, chopped
2 heaped tbsp sundried tomato paste OR ketchup
Light vegetable stock, about 1 litre (4 ¾ cups)
85g (1/2 cup) quinoa, rinsed (or 1 cup cooked quinoa)
Handful of thinly sliced cabbage or kale – optional
1. In a large saucepan sauté the onion in the oil for about five minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened.
2. Add the garlic, sweet potato, celery and red or green pepper and sauté, stirring as needed, for a further five minutes (to cook down the harder vegetables).
3. Stir in the bay/lime leaves, chili powder, oregano and cumin. Let this cook for a minute before adding two-thirds (eg two tins) of the beans, the tomatoes, tomato paste or ketchup, quinoa and three-quarters of the stock. Bring it to the boil and then turn down to simmer for 15 minutes. If you are using the cabbage/kale, add this towards the end unless you want it well-cooked.
4. While the chili is cooking, blend the remaining cooked beans to a puree with a hand blender, or similar. Add into the chili and carry on simmering for a further five minutes. If you want it a bit thinner – more like a soup – add the rest of the stock.
5. Let the chili sit for a few minutes then taste for seasoning and heat – adjusting as you prefer. Remove the bay leaves or lime leaves before serving warm but not hot, with guacamole, Greek yogurt/soured cream, chopped cilantro/coriander and or lime wedges.
This chili reheats very, very well although if allowed to sit overnight you may wish to add a dash more vegetable stock or water to make up for the absorbency of the quinoa.
Enjoy, Americans and non-Americans alike! I used canned black beans because she calls for a no-rinse, but that should not preclude you from punching in your dried bean ticket.