It’s so satisfying to dish out a big bowl of chili on a cold Fall or Winter day, no?
I love chili, and I especially love hot dogs smothered in homemade chili. But we have been cutting back on our red meat consumption and so I wanted to create a version that would be as hearty and satisfying as meat-chili, but a bit healthier.
Another great thing about chili is that you can really add and subtract ingredients based on your taste. Want more spice? Add more than a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes, or even some diced jalapeno.
Don’t like a particular kind of beans? Just swap it out for the beans you do like.
And I love using colorful bell peppers to pack this dish with flavor and vitamins. Plus they are just so darn pretty, aren’t they?
1 onion, diced
½ red bell pepper, diced
½ yellow or orange bell pepper, diced
½ green bell pepper, diced
1/2 jalapeno, de-seeded and diced
1 1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
½ tsp chili powder
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper to taste
1 package ground beef substitute
1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup water
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can pinto or red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (optional)
Greek yogurt or sour cream (optional)
1 scallion (optional)
Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onions, jalapeno and bell peppers, sauteing until vegetables are soft and onions are translucent, about 5-7 minutes.
Add spices and continue to cook 1 minute.
Add ground beef substitute, breaking up with the back of a wooden spoon. Continue to cook another 5 -7 minutes until browned
Add can of tomatoes and water. Bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer and cover for 20-30 minutes. When the chili has cooked and the liquid has reduced, add rinsed beans and stir until mixed throughout.
Serve with cheddar cheese and Greek yogurt or sour cream if desired. Garnish with chopped scallion.
Weekday dinnertime, sigh. You’re tired, you’re hungry and you just want to sit down with a glass of wine and unwind from the day.
Before you reach for those takeout menus, you may want to rummage around in your fridge to see what ingredients you have on hand that can easily be thrown together. That’s exactly what I did last week while looking for something quick, easy (but delicious) to have for dinner after a long day at work.
Because you cook the broccoli with the pasta, this pasta dish is really a cinch to whip up, even on those nights when cooking is the last thing you want to do. No chickpeas? You could replace them with cannellini beans. Extra chicken lying around? Leave out the ricotta and add in some grilled chicken pieces instead.
The lemon zest in this dish goes a long way, packing a strong punch of flavor with such a small step. Do you have a lemon zester as part of your kitchen arsenal? If not make sure to get one immediately! I have one on hand all the time, and even have a separate one for Passover. Here’s the one I love using.
1 cup penne pasta
1 1/2 cups broccoli florets
1/2 cup ricotta
1/2 cup chickpeas
1 Tbsp lemon zest
2 tsp olive oil
salt and pepper
Bring a medium sized pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta as directed. For the last 2-3 minutes of cooking, add broccoli florets to water.
Drain pasta and broccoli.
Add pasta and broccoli to a large bowl and coat with olive oil. Add chickpeas and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well.
Add ricotta on top and serve.