I’m a huge football fan. My Sunday schedule revolves around when my team is playing. I am giddy with excitement when the season begins every year, and I am torn apart when my team (inevitably) ends their run without a Super Bowl ring.
Now, I didn’t grow up in a football family. Instead, one of my friends taught me the beauty of this sport. So I never knew about silly things like what you’re supposed to eat while tailgating or what food you should provide at your Super Bowl party. I mean, who cares? I just want to watch some football.
|This might be the least fresh recipe I make – but it’s soooooo good!|
Well, according to every cooking show ever, chili and wings are the main game day staples. Let’s ignore the wings, because there’s really no way to make them vegetarian. But chili… well, I like chili. It’s like soup (and I looooooove soup), but with more to it. So about two years ago, I decided to make some chili. I mean, if I’m going to be the crazy sports fan that I am, shouldn’t I give the game day foods a chance too?
When I began my search for a chili recipe, I knew one thing for sure: I did not want a big bowl of beans. Unfortunately, that’s what most vegetarian chilies boil down to. So I looked for not vegetarian recipes, and I found a great one over at Real Simple. It had all the staples of a good chili, and, this is the best part, the only liquid in it is beer. I mean, how can you go wrong?
The biggest adjustment I made for this recipe is the meat (obviously). Instead of using ground beef, I use a package of meatless crumbles, and treat it like already browned beef. The crumbles give a “meaty” texture to the dish, and it tastes so good that even your carnivorous friends will like it! (again, it’s full of beer, so it really can’t be bad)
Pair this chili with your favorite cornbread recipe. Get your jersey on, grab a bowl of chili, and prepare yourself for an afternoon of football. As for me, I’m going to go warm up a bowl (it reheats excellently) and watch my team play tonight. Gotta love Monday Night Football. Go Eagles!
**Update: Well, at least the chili was good. Can’t say the same about the game. Sigh.
Meaty Vegan Chili
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 onions, diced
2 bell peppers, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 package of meatless crumbles*
1 6 oz. can tomato paste (preferably with no salt added)
1/4 cup chili powder (yes, you are reading that right. It works, I promise)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 regular bottles lager beer (but feel free to open a 3rd bottle to drink while you cook)
2 regular cans kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes, drained (preferably with no salt added)
Salt and pepper to taste
Your fav toppings (I prefer avocado, scallions, and cheddar cheese of either the real or the fake variety)
*There are a lot of options for meatless crumbles. I used LiteLife, but I know that both MorningStar Farms and Boca make similar products.
1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium to high heat. Add the onions and sweat for a few minutes. Once the onions have softened, add the garlic and the peppers. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about more 5 minutes.
2. Add the meatless crumbles. If yours are frozen or packed into a log, work them with your spoon until the crumbles have come apart.
3. Add the tomato paste, chili powder, and cumin. Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring often.
4. My favorite part – add the beer! Use the liquid to deglaze the pan. Also add the beans and the tomatoes. Stirring occasionally, allow the chili to simmer over medium heat for about 40 minutes, until thickened. Add salt and pepper to taste during this time.
5. Heap some chili into your bowl and top with your favorite chili toppings.