Veg*n Cooking and Other Random Musings: Two Bean-Pumpkin Chili

Monday, November 24, 2008

Two Bean-Pumpkin Chili

I hope everyone had a fantastic weekend. I am a bit beat from my weekend, but I had a lot of fun nonetheless. I am working on a baking project, whose purpose will be revealed at a later time, so my weekends have been filled with quite a bit of baking (and dishes too of course). This weekend my focus was cookies! I made a few different kinds and they all turned out wonderfully. I'm not sure if I will get to it due to Thanksgiving this week, but if I have time, I might schedule at least a couple of them to go up over the holiday. I have a very short week at work this week, and a lot of prep and planning to do for Brett and I's contribution to Thanksgiving, oh, and then there is the whole going out of town thing - so needless to say, I will probably be absent from commenting on everyone's blogs for the rest of the week. If I can, I will schedule some cookie posts, otherwise, you will get them next week in addition to pictures and recipes from our Thanksgiving meal.

In the meantime though, I hope you will not be disappointed with this week's Dark Day's 90% local meal, a two bean chili with pumpkin! I think I mentioned before, chili is one of the first things I learned how to cook, as a result, Brett and I ate far more chili than I care to mention, we were so burnt out on chili - poor Brett more than myself. Long story short, we are both, particularly Brett, very picky about chili now. Most of the time I make it, it gets an "eh" from both of us, and doesn't get blogged about. The last "hit" I had in the chili department was the Two Bean and Lentil Chili and then this.

This was my first attempt at using pumpkin in a savory dish and it is really good. This chili was really good. It was hearty, and had a deep, rich tomato flavor, was just spicy enough, it had hints of sweetness and creaminess from the pumpkin, and even a meaty quality from the oyster mushrooms. And with the two beans, you know it was filling.

The only thing I would do differently with this chili next time would be to chop the pumpkin up a little smaller. We like to eat our chili with tortilla chips and the chunks were hard to scoop up.

(Not pretty by any stretch of the imagination, but so, so tasty.)

The local booty legend (aka revealing my sources):
no asterisk = grocery store
+ = local produce from The Root Cellar
++ = The Peace Nook (will denote whether product is local or just from the Nook)
* = farmer's market
** = CSA
*** = Container or Community Garden
**** = the non-profit buying club, Blue Planet or Purcell Mountain Farms

Two Bean-Pumpkin Chili

4 cups black beans, cooked ****
2 cups pinto beans, cooked ****
4 medium to large tomatoes, chopped +
1 habanero, seeded and minced +
1 hot Hungarian wax pepper (ours was ripe and red!), seeded and minced ***
1 serrano (this one was ripe and red too!!), seeded and minced ***
1 green bell pepper, seeded and minced +
1 purple bell pepper, seeded and minced +
4 cloves of garlic, minced +
1 red onion, chopped +
3 cups fresh pumpkin, chopped +
8 oyster mushrooms, minced +
1/3 cup fresh cilantro, finely minced +
5 cups water
chili powder
Mexican oregano

Combine all ingredients, except the beans, in a large soup pot and simmer for about 2 hours.

Add the beans, and more seasoning if desired, and simmer for an additional 30 minutes to an hour.

This makes a lot of chili. I froze the portion we didn't eat and we will thaw it for a quick meal when we get back from visiting my mom.

I hope everyone has a wonderful (and as local as possible) Thanksgiving!

'Til next time!


VeggieGirl said...

This was your first time trying a savory pumpkin dish?? You mastered it!! :-D

Can't wait to see your baking project!!

selina said...

mmmm.... now i know what i'm gonna do with my pumpkin!!!

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

Veggie Girl - It sure was. Aw, you are far too kind.

I hope to have some scheduled to post this week - otherwise, expect cookie madness next week!

Selina - This was pretty darn tasty, I hope you and Jason like this if you try it!

SusanB said...

This looks really good. By the way, the celery root (celeriac/ginger/potato soup) turned out great -- very intensely flavored. I got a new strange (locally grown) vegetable to try - cardoon, an early ancestor of the artichoke, like a monster celery. Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

Heather @ SGF said...

Ok. You've done it this time. I'm coming for lunch. That chili just looks too good. Save a spot at the table. It's a long walk, but I'll get there eventually... :)

Anonymous said...

I love weekend baking/cooking projects...but sometimes I feel as if all I do all weekend is dishes!

Chili isn't usually very photogenic, but I think yours looks great with the lovely chunks of pumpkin. I am glad you enjoyed your savory pumpkin dish!


bill said...

*drool* This looks soooooo yummy! I love me some pumpkin, but I never thought to put it in chili!! *want*

I can't wait for cookies! I might be trying out a new cookie recipe soon as well; Christmas is definitely approaching with all the cookies I've been making lately!

Lisa (Show Me Vegan) said...

look at all those chiles in the chili! Sounds spicy. I've never put pumpkin in chili but I like the idea. Have a great holiday!

Summer Fae said...

This looks wonderful! I am adding this to my to try pile. Thank you for sharing.

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

Susan B - Thank you. I had wondered what you ended up doing with that. Did it taste at all like celery? I love the idea of ginger and potatoes in soup together.

Cardoon, eh? You'll have to tell me what you do with that one too. There is always a chance I will get something like that in a CSA share one day, at least I'll have an idea of what to do with celeriac if I ever get it. ;-)

You too, thank you!

Heather - Hahahahaha! I don't know how close where you are to Houston, my grandparents live there. It has been too long since I've gone down there to see them, I've just never really liked Houston a whole lot.

The chili was really good, I'm happy there were leftovers to freeze!

Courtney - I think you just described my weekend! Haha! :-)

Oh thank you! I agree, chili doesn't even look all that nice in person, but it tastes so good.

Bill - I am quickly warming up to pumpkin. I've never liked pumpkin pie, so I just wrote off pumpkin entirely, what was I thinking?!

There were a LOT of cookies. Oh yeah, all the baking makes you remember what season it is.

Lisa - I know it seems like a lot, but this recipe makes something like 6 cups of chili or more, so it actually wasn't super spicy. You should try pumpkin in chili sometime, it is pretty good.

Happy Thanksgiving Lisa!

Summer Fae - Thank you so much! If you try this, I hope you like it. Hey, no problem, if I make something good, why keep it to myself? :-)

jessy said...

this chili looks so awesome! i love that its got pumpkin, chilis, AND mushrooms in it! mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm! i have a pumpkin at home, too - perhaps i'll try your recipe out soon! thanks, Jennifer!

hope you have a gloriously local thanksgiving, too! :D

SusanB said...

Celery root does taste like celery -- a really clean crisp distilled raw celery taste (even when cooked).

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

Jessy - Thanks! It is really good and filled with lots of local yummies. I am happy that there was extra to freeze for the cold days of late winter. :-) I hope you guys like this if you try it.

We had a pretty good time, I hope you had a great one too!

Susan B - Thanks for the description, it sounds pretty interesting. I have to admit, I'm not a celery fan, so I hope to never come across one, but at least I'd know what to do with it!

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