Vegan or Vegetarian, It’s Still Chili to Me!

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I admit it, I’m an omnivore. But I’m an omnivore with a primarily plant based diet. So many of the foods we’ve been conditioned to think ‘require’ meat, simply do not. Chili is one of them. Now don’t get me wrong, I love a classic chili with homemade beans, ground beef, and even some chuck roast – simmering on a low flame while the snow or cold rain falls in the winter. BUT… have you tried vegetarian chili? If your spice mix is of quality ingredients (in other words homemade) you won’t miss the meat.

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For this simple vegan chili I sauteed cauliflower, butternut squash cubes, chopped red bell pepper, and chopped onion in a little olive oil. When the vegetables began to soften I added a few tablespoons of homemade chili spice mix (recipe in The Tasteful Muse, Volume Two) and deglazed the pan with a bit of white wine. Then I added water, and (no sodium) vegetable bouillon. I let this simmer until the vegetables were soft but not mushy. Then I added a can of drained and rinsed kidney beans.

At this point the chili is ready to serve. But in order to create a seasonal presentation I removed the tops and seeds from mini pumpkins. I filled each with chili and baked them until the tops browned. Some guests ate the chili out of the squash and some cut the pumpkins open and ate them too!

Until next time… Release YOUR Bon Vivant and Savor Your Life!

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