Wednesday, January 27, 2010

White Vegetarian Chili

First off, the chili isn't named after me :). It's just not your typical deep, thick, rich, tomato paste-y chili. Much lighter...and whiter. OK, here's where the real blog post starts.....

Do you have any recipes that you've had for so long that you pretty much have it memorized, but you take it out to follow it just in case? They have stains on them, notes all over them...? I do! Actually, just one. In this day and age (this is what old people say), recipes are found online, traded by email, etc... Most of my favorite recipes are saved on my computer, in a web-based recipe book or in a cookbook. But I do have this one... I'm not sure why I think it's so funny, but it was scanned from a magazine and then printed out. Is it just me, or is that totally archaic? If you want, I can fax it to you.

The recipe that I'm talking about is a White Chicken Chili from Cooking Light magazine. It must be 6 years old, or so. I've made it countless times and many adaptations and it was always wonderful. This year though, it's vegetarian. And, I know there are a lot more ways to make this more chili-like, but instead of adding in fake meat (which is something I think is so weird about vegetarians - some seek out fake meat that is supposed to have the same texture, etc...ummm, no thanks) I opted for more vegies which yields a light, fresh, clean, yummy chili.

The original recipe calls for 2 pounds of chicken breast, chicken stock, no black beans, zucchini or cabbage and less chili peppers - just in case you want to make the original. The zucchini and cabbage give it more substance instead of that fake meat stuff I keep talking about.

Well, enough chatter already! Here's the recipe:

White Vegetarian Chili
3 small zucchini - diced
1/4 - 1/2 head of cabbage, thinly sliced
2 cups finely chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp coriander
3 (4.5 oz) cans chopped green chiles, undrained
1 cup water
4 cups vegie stock
2 cans cannelini beans (rinsed and drained)
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can black beans (rinsed and drained)
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
Olive oil
1 lime
Yogurt (optional)
Salt and pepper

Heat 1 tbsp, or so, of olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add onions and saute for 6 minutes - stirring frequently. Add garlic; until fragrant. Add cumin, oregano, and coriander; saute 1 minute. Add zucchini and cabbage and saute until the cabbage starts to wilt and the zucchini gets soft - about 5 minutes. Add in chiles and tomatos. Reduce heat to low and cook 10 minutes, partially covered. Add the water, stock, and beans; bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Add juice from the lime, salt and pepper to taste. Serves 8. Top with cilantro and yogurt.

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