Blend mayonnaise, cilantro, jalapeno pepper, garlic, lime juice, cumin, and salt together in a blender or food processor until smooth. Pour mixture into a bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until flavors blend, at least 1 hour.
The story of chili always ends with the statement that it’s better the second day. So why don’t we just make it ahead of time and consider that first day as part of the cooking process? I do. My “vegan-ified” version uses pecans, which have a distinct richness and “meaty” mouthfeel, and play very nicely with the brown spices. The dried mushrooms are a nifty addition that I learned from Cook’s Illustrated. Not only do the pulverized mushrooms thicken the chili, they also add that forest-floor bass note that we interpret as “hearty.” I keep some dried mushroom powder in my spice rack at all times—whatever’s cheapest—and you should too. A spoonful will add a layer of complexity to vegan dishes and omnivorous dishes alike.
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
16 ounces button mushrooms, stems removed, wiped clean, and quartered
1 yellow onion, diced
1 large green bell pepper, seeds and ribs removed, diced
2 jalapeño peppers, seeds and ribs removed, finely minced
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
2 cups pecans (about 7 ounces), toasted, very finely chopped
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 cinnamon stick
Two 15-ounce cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
One 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, with juice
2 cups vegetable stock (or vegetable broth, and cut the salt by half)
One 15-ounce can tomato sauce
One 1-ounce package dried mushrooms (whatever is cheapest), pulverized in a blender
1 tablespoon kosher salt
In a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat, heat the oil and add the fresh mushrooms. Cook, stirring only once, until browned, about 6 minutes.
Add the rest of the ingredients to the pot. Scrape the bottom of the pot and stir to incorporate. Simmer until the vegetables and nuts are soft, about 30 minutes. Let cool. Refrigerate overnight.
HOLD IT? Keep the chili in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Reheat the chili in a pot over low heat, stirring often.
PLATE IT! My ideal chili-serving vessel would be the dolsot, which is an individual Korean earthenware bowl that retains tons of heat. You can find them online. Warm them up slowly in the oven, and then ladle in the chili. Or you can scoop the chili into a bowl. Garnish with whatever you like (see below).
BREAK IT: Chili is kind of an open-source recipe. Now that you’ve made it, customize it to your liking. Change the beans, add some greens, or even wrap it in a tortilla and fry it up like the chimichangas.
1 butternut squash cut in half
3 carrots cut in pieces
2 cloves garlic cut in half
1 onion diced
1 – 2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp corriander
medium piece of orange zest, no white
salt and pepper
4-6 C water
1 tsp soup base
Place squash with seeds left in it’s easier to remove them after roasting, carrots and garlic on lightly greased baking sheet, roast in 350 degree oven until squash is done, 30-50 minutes. In the meantime put olive oil in dutch oven add onion and cook until translucent add spices and cook for a few minutes. Remove squash add to the onion along with carrots and garlic. Add water, soup base, salt and pepper along with orange zest. Bring to a slow boil, then turn down to a simmer and allow to cook 20 min. Remove orange zest then whirl with emersion, adjust seasoning and serve. Would be nice with a dollop of creme fraiche or sour cream and some toasted pumpkin seeds
I started out making making lunch using Ina’s brown rice salad with tomatoes and basil but while the rice was cooking and after the vinaigrette was made A Pinch of Salt email arrived with Brown rice, cumin and lime vinaigrette. The following is the end result which was very tasty. I was out of cilantro (tsk tsk) but will use it next time.
1 cup brown rice
2 tsp kosher salt, divided
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
2 tablespoon good olive oil
1 tsp cumin<
1 garlic clove minced
grated rind of 1 lime
Freshly ground black pepper
2 c. diced tomates
1 can chick peas
1 jalapeno diced
¼ c. diced red onion
2-3 tbsp cilantro I substituted italian parsley
juice of one lime
Bring 2 1/4 cups water to a boil and add the rice and 1 teaspoon of the salt. Return to a boil, cover, and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes, until the rice is tender and all the water is absorbed. Transfer the rice to a bowl.
Whisk together the vinegar, sugar, olive oil, lime rind, cumin, remaining teaspoon of salt, and a pinch of pepper. Pour over the rice. Stir gently. Add the tomatoes, chick peas, onion, jalapeno, lime juice and cilantro. Mix well and check the seasonings. Serve at room temperature.