Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Eating Well: Crock pot chili

I have a well-documented love of chili. Ever since I was a child, I've loved chili -- and it was one of the few dishes my mom enjoyed making, or seemed to enjoy making (she isn't the hugest fan of cooking). As an adult, I've made many varieties of chili, and have taken cues from some of my friends over the years, adding new little twists to a trusted recipe. But chili in my dusty crock pot? I'd actually never done that.

Last week I made the same crock pot chili recipe twice. It was so good. This is surprising to me because I have a love-hate relationship with my crock pot. Every time I use it, I end up disappointed with the results; but this time marked the first success ever. As someone who doesn't eat meat or dairy, I think a crock pot can be a bit puzzling; after all, some of the best crock pot recipes out there certainly involve meat. But I think chili is perfect for a slow cooker, and that's why I'm going to share my recipe with you today.

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Ingredients in crock pot before cooking
Ingredients:

4-5 cloves garlic
1 red onion
1/2 bag frozen corn
1 can kidney beans
1 packet (1/2 package) Gardein meatless ground
1/2 bell pepper (any color)
1 28oz can diced tomatoes
Water (about 4 cups, but however much you want to desired thickness)
Cilantro/parsley/green onion (garnish)

Spices:

Chili powder
Cumin
Nutmeg
Coriander
Bay leaves (2)
Oregano or Italian seasoning
Salt + Pepper

Directions:

Crock pot recipes are the best because here are the directions:

Dice garlic and onion. Throw all ingredients into crock pot. Add spices. I say wing it -- you can use up to 1/4 cup chili powder if you want (or less), which should be the most of any spice you use, but other than that just do what seems right. I usually put in about half as much cumin as I do chili powder, etc. I never measure. You can always taste and adjust throughout the cooking process.

Then stir everything up, put the lid on the crock pot and set it to high for four hours. I always get antsy and stir it every once in a while, and it never seems to hurt the final result.

When it's done, garnish with something green (cilantro/parsley/green onion) and you are good to go!

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Ready to eat! SO good!

8 comments:

  1. I love my crock pot. I am making a (not-vegan, alas) tamale pie in mine today! That recipe is from a book called 125 Best Vegetarian Slow-Cooker Recipes, and I think it could be tweaked to be vegan as all of the dairy is in the cornbread topping. I'll let you know how it turns out. :)

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    1. Yes please do let me know!! That sounds SO good with the corn bread ... as I like to say about many things, "I may be vegan, but I'm not DEAD!"

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  2. Replies
    1. So, the tamale pie did not work out so well. I'd say better to do this one in the oven where the cornbread can truly bake.

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    2. Yeah -- are you going to try it again? PS NOW I WANT CORNBREAD

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  3. Best slow cooker book ever: http://www.amazon.com/Fresh-Vegetarian-Slow-Cooker-Recipes/dp/1558322566

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