Thursday, November 1, 2012


I've tried so many chili recipes to get a really good one...and I think this is that really good one.  I made it for our Halloween party at our house last night and everyone loved it!  I think it's a keeper.

1 lb. ground beef
1 large onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 yellow or green bell pepper, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
3 cloves garlic, diced
2 c. kernel corn, I used frozen
2 - 16 oz cans chili beans, mild
1 - 16 oz can black beans
1 - 28 oz can tomato sauce
1 - 6 oz can tomato paste
1 Tbsp. cumin
1 Tbsp coriander (I didn't have this, so I didn't use it.  I guess I don't know how it would taste with it)
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried cilantro
1/2 tsp. or more chili powder, to taste (I only used 1/2 tsp)
1 1/2 c. beef broth
salt and pepper to taste
olive oil

Preheat a large soup pot.  Drizzle with olive oil.  Add ground beef, chopped onions, bell peppers, celery and garlic to pot.  Brown meat and cook veggies until tender.  (I already had cooked ground beef, but I would say drain the ground beef here).  Add corn, beans, tomato sauce and tomato paste.  Add spices and broth.  Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer.  Simmer for at least 1 hour, stirring occasionally.  Serve with saltines or corn bread.

Okay, so I actually cooked all the veggies in a skillet and just through everything else in the crock pot while veggies were cooking.  Then, I added the veggies [and ground beef] and cooked it on low for a few hours, letting the flavors simmer.  I think the crock pot would be the easiest way.  Then we served it with Fritos.

Squash and Lentil Stew

I bought butternut squash since it is Fall, and couldn't figure out what to do with it.  This stew turned out superb though!  

3 tbsp olive oil
3 carrots, peeled and diced
2 ribs celery, trimmed and diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 lb. ground beef (optional, I used it)
1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced (5 1/2 c.)
2 Tbsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1 14 1/2 oz can light and fat-free chicken broth
1 14 1/2 oz can diced tomatoes in juice
1 1/2 c. small brown or French green lentils, picked through
additional water as needed
3/4 tsp. salt
1/3 c. cilantro leaves, chopped
additional salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium heat.  Add carrots, celery and onion and cook 5 minutes.  (This is where I also browned the ground beef).  Add squash and season with chili powder and ground cumin.  Cook 1 minute.

Stir in broth, tomatoes, 1/2 c. water, and lentils.  Cover and simmer on medium-low heat for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Uncover and stir in salt.  Simmer, uncovered an additional 10 minutes.  (I just put it in the crock pot on high for a couple of hours until the squash was soft and the lentils were done to taste).  Stir in cilantro and serve.