Saturday, February 18, 2012

Vegetarian Black Bean Chili

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I absolutely love this recipe. Conversely, The Hubby won't even try it. Something to do with his hatred for cilantro and lime.

I have come to realize that cilantro is really one of those love or hate foods. If you like it, you LOVE it, and want more more more (or is that just me?), but if you don't like it you HATE it and can detect its presence even when it is barely there. I am always amazed at how different one person's food tastes can be compared to another's. How is it that I never crave chocolate, and some people would die without it? Or that I luck out by being someone who has a love of black jellybeans while others will eat around them? Or that some people will gloop ketchup onto everything from potatoes to eggs to Kraft Dinner, while others will only eat these foods plan?

One of the weirdest things that I heard about cilantro in my waitressing days was that customers wanted it left off of their plate because it tastes like soap. Soap? Huh?
Is it weird that this still looks delicious to me?

But yes, apparently due to some sort of chemical reaction, some people are naturally predisposed to detect either a soapy or metallic taste when they are eating cilantro.  I feel honestly and truly bad for these people for missing out on such a delicious herb!!!  So, cilantro lovers rejoice, this recipe is packed with an entire bunch of leafy cilantro goodness.  And if you really hate it you can just omit it because the chili is great even without it.  Packed with cilantro, lime, beer and tomatoes (plus a ton of healthy veggies and three kinds of beans), this chili tastes like summer and Mexico to me.

Even though The Hubby won't touch it, I made this chili for me alone to eat for lunches at work over the past week.  It was great.  Get will need a BIG pot for this one (at least 8 litres/quarts). 

Vegetarian Black Bean Chili

  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 2 onions, diced
  • 6 carrots, diced
  • 6 celery stalks, diced
  • 2 zucchinis, diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, finely minced (include seeds)
  • 1 tbsp. garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 2 tsp. basil
  • 2 tsp. oregano
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 19 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 19 oz. can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 - 19 oz. cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups corn, fresh or frozen
  • 2 - 28oz cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 bottle or can of beer (use gluten-free if desired)
  • 1 tsp. chipotle in adobo sauce (found in the Mexican section of the grocery store)
  • water or stock (enough to cover final mixture)
  • 1 bunch cilantro (optional, I guess)
  • 2 limes
  • salt and pepper to taste

  • Directions 
  • In a big-ass pot, saute onions, carrots, celery, zucchini, jalapeno, and garlic in oil until soft. 
    • Add chili powder, cumin, basil, oregano, and bay leaves, and saute for 2 - 3 more minutes. 
    • Add chickpeas, kidney beans, black beans, corn, tomatoes, beer (I use the 'some for the pot, some for me' rule), and chipotle. 
    • Add enough water or stock to cover the entire mixture, and let simmer for about an hour, stirring often.  Add one entire bunch of cilantro (unless you hate it, which I most definitely do not!), and both the zest and juice of the limes. 
    • Add salt and pepper to taste. 

    • Serves: 12 large portions

  • Megan's Review: Love this! 10/10! Next time I will make some cornbread to go with it, and add a bit less broth to avoid it turning out too soupy.
    The Hubby's Review: Probably awful.
    Brother's Review: So good!!!

Recipe Source: Whitewater Cooks (

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