Vegetarian Chili

Sydney says Chili without meat is a contradiction.

She's wrong.

I've been making a "meatless" meal for the family one night a week for a few weeks now. I've gone from following recipes to inventing. This idea came from Rob, who wanted Chili last week when I was trying to think of a vegetarian meal. An idea was born.

Because I came up with it, it's a bit of this and a dash of that, but I tried to give approximate measures. It had a bit of a bite, so if you have "gringo" mouth, cut the chili powder.

This was YUM-mee.

(All the vegetables were chopped into 3/4" chunks.)

1/2 green bell pepper
1/2 red bell pepper
1/2 onion
a handful of sliced celery
2T Olive oil

1 Large Eggplant, peeled
3 Tomatoes
14 oz can of Cannelini beans, drained and rinsed
1 pkg Mild Chili Seasoning (we get it in envelopes from McCormick seasonings)
1/2C water
1T Chili Powder
1t ground cumin
Salt and Pepper to taste

Put the first set of veggies in a large sauce pan with the olive oil and heat them until they start to soften around the edges and release their flavors. This is a very frangrant base for the chili.

Add the eggplant, tomatoes and beans and let this cook, stirring often until the eggplant starts to soften. Add the seasonings and water, reduce heat, cover and let cook about 10 minutes to season the veggies. Stir often to prevent sticking.

Don't overcook or you'll get a gluey goo.

Serve with crackers. Sydney added some grated cheese and a pickle.


I'm really enjoying this vegetable meal once a week. Last week it was spaghetti and the week before, a potatoe casserole. This week's meal is a cold potatoe salad. I eat several meatless meals a week, but that's not what I served the family. Now that I've started, they're kind of liking it. It's fun to invent new things based on what I already know about cooking, but it's also good to have a couple of vegetarian cookbooks for inspiration. For example, last week's vege spaghetti was supposed to be something totally different, but, just before it was finished, it looked really bland, so I tossed in the leftovers of a couple jars of spag sauce and everyone dug in like it was Tgiving or something.

On the quilting front, there is less excitement. I'm still working the ditchwork on "West of Paris, Texas". I hate ditchwork. BORING! And, exact. But, soon as that's done, it's all fun until the binding.

Sydney's purple quilt is ready for pin basting. That would be done by now, except I made her press it one last time on Sunday and she didn't want to and the whole mood of the thing came crashing down. I know it wasn't the quilt. Mother's Day is hard for her, and somehow, that's my fault. So, after several attempts to keep the project moving, I had her help me fold it up and we all went on to doing other things. No need to fight about it, even though that seemed to be what she really wanted to do. But, why should I ruin my day to give her something she doesn't need. It's funny. I kept turning my head away and biting my tongue to keep from responding and every time she'd leave the room, Rob would give a pep talk to keep me strong and ready for the next onslaught of rolled eyes and tears and sarcasm. But, we got through that and we have another Mother's day under our belts. We can rest until her Birthday, when, once again, Sydney's Mom won't even send a card and somehow, that will be my fault, too.

Take care and have a great Tuesday. If you have a favorite vegetarian meal that's not too fussy, please email it to me. We'd love to give it a try.



Paul said...

Thanks Lane, My mouth is now drooling thinking about that Chili! I do believe we will be attempting that dish in our home soon.

Chyenne also had a rough day on Sunday. She made a beautiful Mother's Day card for Trish, but she was more quiet and "to herself" than normal... I think she was trying to process it all.

By the way, we met with our Lawyer yesterday and the adoption of her sister, Mary, should happen mid summer. We are thrilled.

Take Care,

BlueRidge Boomer said...

Stir Fry...!!
With any veggie in the refrig, even cut-up tomatoes thrown on at the last minute, i use one packet of "stir fry" mix ...served over brown rice.....always a hit around my house..

lw said...

My daughter Madelaine is vegan, so we do a lot of things like veggie burritos (soy cheese on hers, cheddar on the rest of ours.) We toast the burrito shells in the cast iron skillet, then throw in black bean refries, brown rice and any and all raw veggies we've got in the garden or frig.

birdmommy said...

Now that the weather is getting nice, we'll do veggies on the BBQ. We usually use a mesh basket, but if you're careful you can just lay a lot of things directly on the grill. Now I really want some grilled asparagus! :)
The veggies are good in just about everything - over pasta (with a little olive oil), as the filling for tortillas - even just by themselves in a big bowl. Yum!

LynCC said...

Thanks for the recipe. My 13yo just went vegetarian, so I appreciate the new idea! :D