When I suggested recipes for my Mom to make over Christmas, she was a bit shocked when she found out a few were new recipes. One of the cardinal rules of cooking for guests is to never try a new recipe on unsuspecting guests. I have long abandoned that rule, though.
Truth be told, sometimes it can be difficult to munch on a dish you’ve already made yourself but made by someone else. Sometimes, it will taste the same. We repeatedly return to our favourite hummus recipe (this one, too) because it is so reliable. But in the flash of a pan, a dish can taste different.
Therefore, I figured I would give my Mom all of the glory from a few fabulous new dishes.
The Chickpea Piccata, was a definite hit. I didn’t want to share any of the leftovers!
The second hit was this Pumpkin Chili. I originally spotted it on Isobelle’s site, but the recipe came from Ashlae. While I have made other chilis before, this is definitely my favourite so far. A savoury saucy chili, filled with beans and vegetables. Flavourful, not spicy despite using jalapeno peppers. The pumpkin puree adds a touch of sweetness but doesn’t leave you with a pumpkin flavour. The TVP plumps up to look just like ground meat, it is almost confusing. What isn’t confusing is how great it tastes: delicious.
When we trying to decide what to do with the leftover chili, I suggested my Mom freeze it and save it for the next time I visit. This way, there would be a surefire Janet-friendly meal already waiting for me.
However, after I went home, I called to make sure I had the right recipe for the tantalizing chili. Only minor changes using canned tomatoes and beans. She even used jalapeno peppers! However, my Mom had bad news. There was no more chili left: my Dad had polished it all off! Vegan chili so good it could fool the unsuspecting omnivore: I consider that a success. My Mom makes a tasty chili and I can’t wait to have it again.
3 tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
2 small jalapenos, finely chopped
28 oz canned whole tomatoes, undrained
1/4 cup tomato paste
3 cups vegetable broth
2 tbsp lemon juice
4.5 cups cooked beans (my Mom used 1 19-oz can of mixed beans and one 19-oz can of red kidney beans)
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
2-3 tbsp chili powder, to taste
1 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup TVP
2 tsp fine sea salt, to taste
1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, heat oil and sauté the garlic and onions, until the onions become translucent.
2. Add the jalapenos and tomatoes, stirring occasionally for 1-2 minutes.
3. In a medium bowl, mix together the tomato paste, broth, and lemon juice. Add to pan, deglaze the bottom and increase the heat to bring to a boil. Once boiling, add the beans, cinnamon, paprika, and chili powder, then cover, reduce heat to the lowest setting and let simmer for at least two hours, stirring occasionally.
4. After two hours, mix in the pumpkin puree, TVP and sea salt. Let simmer, uncovered, for an additional 15 minutes, or until the chili thickens.