OK. So my girlfriend, Jen, requested I deliver on my promise to post my chili scene before the weather turns. As she is one of my favorite people on the planet (she helped schlep my kids and even brought me a gorgeous plant when I was on my imagined death bed last month,) this is a request I am happy to accommodate.
Michelle’s Easy-Peasy Black Bean Chili
Ingredients: 2 tbsp. olive oil, 1/2 med onion (diced), 1 clove crushed garlic, 2 med bell peppers (diced–approximately 1 1/2 cups), Two 15 oz. cans black beans (with liquid–don’t drain’em!), One 15 oz. can diced, stewed or crushed tomatoes, One 6 oz. can tomato paste, 1 1/2 tsp. chili powder, salt and pepper to taste.
Directions: Simmer onion (any kind will do,) garlic and olive oil for a few minutes. Add bell pepper and cook until peppers start to soften. Add everything else, stir and bring to a boil/simmer until peppers are fully cooked. You. Are. Done.
(OK. Yes you can top off your creation with shredded cheese, diced onions, sour cream, what have you… Then. You. Are. Done.)
Tips: You can use fresh tomatoes if you have them, but this is the “easy-peasy” recipe so we’re going with that theme. Any color bell pepper and any type of onion will do. This is a mild version so my kids will enjoy it as well. Often I serve my three little Gringo-mouths first and then add cayenne and chipotle powder or hot sauce to Mike and mine.
You can use other beans besides black (kidney, red, white, pinto) if you like, but I only include the liquid of black beans when I cook. Any other kind tends to have that viscous water-ish situation that I prefer to drain. It grosses me out. What can I say? So, if you use red or another type of bean, you’ll need to add water.
Meat (chopped leftover cooked chicken or cooked sausage, ground beef) can also be added to this recipe, but even my meat-and-potatoes husband found this version satisfying from the get-go.
Besides the obvious ease with which this meal is created (it literally takes me 10 minutes start to finish), I love how healthy and tasty this chili is. Legumes baby!!!!
My final fave thing about this recipe is the variety of simple ways I can use it to make different meals. There are soooo many ways, in fact, that I’m going to don this week “Chili Week!” Tune in all week to see all the easy-peasy-tasty-healthy ways you can make this meal for your family too!
I usually double or even triple/quadruple this recipe, freeze or share with someone I love.
For today, we’ll go with two chili thingies:
Michelle’s fave: Chili with crushed tortilla chips on top (Hey–how did that beer get in the photo!?)
And we also like our chili with cornbread.
I usually use Trader Joe’s cornbread mix, and substitute buttermilk for regular milk. Super yum.
What else can a mama do with chili? Baby, just you wait…