Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Soup's On!

I've been back in New York for a few weeks now after spending an amazing and utterly life-changing four months in Ghana! And...it's cold as hell, so you know what that means? Time for soup. If you can imagine, cooking in Ghana was tough. Not only was there a lack in accessibility to the ingredients I needed, there was often times a lack of gas in the stove (or in the entire country for that matter). Even when we had gas on the stove, they were really janky. It was a boil to death/ burn or nothing situation. So, when I first got back to America and was staying at my mom's place with complete access to her fully-functional kitchen and wide array of ingredients, plus the painfully cold weather (hey, it was 103 degrees almost everyday before I left, ok!) equals tons of staying inside and cooking!

This recipe is adapted from The Gorgeously Green Diet's Turkey Chili. My changes are written in italics. Enjoy!

1 tbsp olive oil (I used coconut oil because it has a higher smoking point than olive so it is healthier for cooking foods for longer periods of time)
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced (I double, maybe tripled this. I love me some garlic!)
1 1/2lbs organic ground turkey (Obviously I omitted this entirely. I added another cup of kidley beans two cups of pinto beans)
1 tbsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 ground cinnamon (I would probably omit this next time I make this recipe. It made the chili a little sweet and I like mine with more of a spicy kick)
1 tsp salt
3 cups vegetable broth (I used a bit less as I like my chili chunky!)
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce (I've made this without before but it actually adds a very crucial, smokey flavor)
1 15-oz can kidney beans (or two cups of dried beans that you cook before hand. cheaper and healthier :)
1 15-oz can whole organic tomatoes
1 medium zucchini, cubed
2 medium carrots, grated
2 cups stemmed and chopped rainbow or swiss chard (I substituted kale for this because that is what I had and also because I love kale, hence the name of this blog!)
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (Didn't do this because I don't really care for cilantro and did not have any of this. I just added more kale!!)
I also added about 2 small jalapeƱo peppers because I am a spice addict!

What I used:
You don't need these exact brands for this recipe, these are just some great kitchen staples that worked wonderfully for me!

Check out my sweet paper towel backdrop! I'm so professional.
From left to right: Trader Joe's Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil, The Wizards Vegan Worcestershire Sauce, Imagine Organic No-Chicken Broth, Trader Joe's spices and Spectrum Organic Virgin Coconut Oil

What I did:
First I cooked up all the beans together. I soaked the beans overnight and then discarded the soaking water, covered them with fresh water and brought it all to a boil. I let them boil uncovered for about 5-10 minutes, skimming off the foam from the top of pot (that's the part that gives you gas. gross. Then I covered them and cooked them for about 40 more minutes.
Then I tossed in the veggies and spices and mixed it all together. I covered it all with broth and let it simmer until the veggies were fully cooked and the beans were nice and soft.

Then I tossed in the veggies and spices and mixed it all together.

I covered it all with broth and let it simmer until the veggies were fully cooked and the beans were nice and soft. Viola! Delicious, filling veggie chili! I froze half of it in small containers that I can just throw in a pot and re-heat when I don't have time to make dinner from scratch. I kept the rest in the fridge and ate it throughout the week as a soup, mixed into grains or rolled up in a brown rice wrap.

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