Cowgirl Beans Chili

I heard a while back, coworkers discuss making chili and how it would take all day in the crockpot to get just right. Now don’t get me wrong, I love the crockpot (especially for my refried beans) but … I also want to be able to create a fantastic comforting meal within an hour of getting home from work.

Done and done.

Cowgirl Beans Chili
Entree
6-7
 
You can have a steamy bowl of comforting chili ready in less than an hour! If you prep your veggies ahead of time- have the garlic, onion and peppers in one bowl and zucchini & mushrooms in another, you could have dinner ready in 40 minutes. Don't feel married to the ingredients maybe you don't have zucchini but have a sweet potato or aren't sure which peppers you like yet. Use what you have and experiment to find your taste with spices and peppers.
Ingredients
Veggies
  • spray oil
  • large chopped onion & 2 minced garlic cloves
  • peppers (2 bell, & 2 of a spicy: jalepeno/poblano/serrano OR chipotle in adobo), minced
  • 2 zucchinis cubed
  • 4-5 portobello mushrooms or package of baby bella mushrooms cubed
  • 2 cups corn (frozen or fresh)
Spices
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1½ tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1¼ teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
Tomato & Beans
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • 3 cups black beans (canned rinsed or cooked dried)
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
Instructions
  1. Spray your deep pot with oil
  2. Over medium high heat saute your onions, garlic, peppers
  3. Add zucchini & mushrooms saute until browned.
  4. Add corn and spices.
  5. Turn up heat and add tomatoes, beans and water.
  6. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to simmer.
  7. Taste and adjust seasonings if needed, let simmer for about 20 minutes (just enough time to pop your cornbread in the oven and spin your salad!)

 

 

 

Caramelized French Onion Soup

This vegetarian take on French Onion soup builds on the flavors of slowly caramelized onions in a balsamic reduction. I used the picture from my award-winning caramelized onions because sometimes food disappears fast around here.

Caramelized French Onion Soup
entrée, Appetizer
4-6
 
The optional ingredients are wine (just add more water) and cheese, omit if vegan. You can use a veggie bouillon cube and water in place of the veggie stock.
Ingredients
Caramelize Onions
  • 4-6 onions, sliced thinly
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ cup good dark balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
Finish Soup
  • flour
  • 2 bay leaves
  • thyme, salt & pepper
  • red wine (optional)
  • 6-7 cups water or veggie stock (or mixture of the 2)
  • slice of organic cheese, Gruyure or Swiss (optional)
Instructions
  1. Spray your pot with olive oil, add onions and garlic.
  2. Cook over medium-low heat until begin to color a bit.
  3. Add balsamic and brown sugar.
  4. Stir to combine, reduce heat to low and let caramelize, stirring occasionally, 30-40 minutes.
  5. After dark, golden brown, add wine and bring to boil. Reduce to simmer and let reduce about 5 min.
  6. Add 2 tbls of flour and stir to coat. Cook over low heat about 10 min. (This will thicken the soup a bit).
  7. Then add bay leaves, teaspoon of thyme, S&P, ½-1 cup wine and 6-7 cups water.
  8. Let simmer for 15-20 minutes, then check taste, and re-season with thyme and S&P as needed.
  9. If using cheese, place slices over oven proof mugs or crocks filled with soup in oven and broil until browned and beginning to crisp.
  10. Serve with warm baguette for sopping up tastiness.

 

Oh, look. There's a dog in my soup mug.