This chili is a bit spicier than many recipes I have seen. Mind you - there are as many chili recipes as there are Italian spaghetti sauce recipes!
I like to add a pkg of Old El Paso Fajita seasoning. You could use Chili or Taco seasoning if you prefer but oddly enough we prefer the Fajita mix. The secret to a good chili is to add some vinegar along with the seasonings to give it a bit of zing. Instead of straight vinegar I use a small, 7.6 oz, can of La Costena Green Mexican Sauce. It is pickled jalapeno sauce so I get my vinegar in that way along with some extra kick!
The Mexican Green Sauce makes gives this the perfect amount of bite for me. It borders on too spicy for my husband's taste although it seems to be ok if he eats the Corn Bread
with it to sort of tame it. The spiciness quotient is so personal... some people like to be mopping their foreheads with a cloth while others don't want any hint of heat.
If you are not sure I would suggest you taste it before adding the Mexican Green Sauce and decide if you want to add any, some or all.
Some recipes call for meat-anything from ground beef to big chunks of steak. You don't have to add meat to this. Legumes are considered a close if not complete protein source. Historically it was suggested to eat rice or corn with legumes. This would round out the 9 essential amino acids required to constitute a complete protein. More recent thinking is that legumes like black beans and kidney beans do contain all 9 essential amino acids. The quantity of some may be somewhat lower than ideal. That means you would have to eat a disproportionate serving in order to reach the full daily requirement. So- they do qualify as complete proteins but their nutritional value could be enhanced by complementing them with other food sources. Note- you do not have to consume all sources at the same meal in order for your body to use them.
So - clear as mud eh? If in doubt eat it with the Basic Corn Bread recipe! You can serve it on the side or make one of the variations and bake it on top of the chili in the oven like a dumpling or Corn Spoon Pudding.
To make this vegetarian or vegan, sauté onion in 2 Tbsps vegetable oil along with spices til onions are soft and then add the remaining ingredients. You may want to increase the amount of mushrooms to taste and/or add some thinly sliced carrots.
Any way you look at it you can't beat a dish like this for high fiber, low fat, low glycemic index, satisfying hunger.
- 1 lb ground beef or turkey see Variation for vegetarian or vegan version
- 1 19 oz can black beans
- 1 19 oz can red kidney beans
- 1 large onion diced
- 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes (NOT seasoned)
- 1 cup water
- 227 grams sliced mushrooms
- 2 Tbsps chili powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 39 gram pkg Fajita Seasoning (I use Old El Paso)
- 1 7.6 oz can Green Mexican Sauce optional (I use La Costena). If not using add 1 tablespoon white vinegar with the tomatoes.
- Brown ground meat in a large dutch oven.
- Add onions, chili powder, Fajita seasoning, black pepper and salt. Sautée another 4 minutes to toast the spices.
- Drain and rinse the beans in a colander. Add beans, tomatoes and mushroom. Mix well.
- Allow to simmer 20-30 minutes to combine flavours and heat through.
- Taste the mixture for heat. Add Green Mexican sauce to taste. Allow to simmer another 5 minutes or so before serving.