Pioneer Woman at Heart

One Flourishing, Frugal and Fun Family!

One family learning to live off the land, cut back on expenses, and to live a simpler and a more self-sufficient lifestyle.

Adopted Motto

"Eat it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,
Or go without."
~A Pioneer Sampler, by Barbara Greenwood~

Friday, January 6, 2017

Chili ~ Homesteader Variety

I got up yesterday morning and fell in love with the giant snowflakes.  I was inspired to cook dinner for once.  I love cooking, so this is a huge step forward in recovery.  The girls cooked the last two nights.

This is not your regular chili.  To get this pot of awesome delicious-ness going, I went into my "pretend root cellar" and got a few sweet potatoes (so thankful we still have some, and in edible condition). 

The garage is too cold to store my potatoes.  I put a card table up in my utility room (which has a doorway directly across from the side door we go out of most often).  The heat is never on in that room, so it stays cool (unless we hit below zero and then I turn on the heat to prevent frozen pipes).  Sadly, it was not the best way to store my red potatoes.  When I got home from the hospital, I saw they all had long "eyes" on them.  Back in November, the temperature was not cold enough in that room.

Thrilled I had homegrown sweet potatoes, I dug through my recipes, and could not find my chili recipe.  I found it online and began to dig through my freezer:

- green peppers (I need to stock up more next winter)
- jalapenos
- tomatoes
- dandelions (pick of the draw this time)

Then I went to the pantry for black and kidney beans.

Then I went to my bins and pulled homegrown garlic.

Wa-la!  Oh, and I pulled onions, but found the last two rotten.  I had one shallot left.  I guess I need to get back to restocking that ASAP.

The last step was the spice/herb cupboard - cumin, chili powder, cocoa, cinnamon and salt and pepper.

It's not your variety chili, but the shallot put some zest into the dish.  Instead of canned fire-roasted tomatoes, I used my frozen tomatoes with some jalapenos (and a hit of Fire Powder) to jazz it up.

Lastly, I wilted some greens in water, squeezed them dry, and added them just before we ate dinner.  We have lacked greens due to me not cooking, and it was a perfect time to get some.

This was the best darn vegetarian chili I have made yet!  It's even better when you top it with a dollop of sour cream.  The family devoured it.  It's great if you have some frozen green onions or chives too.  One kiddo came home from work, downed a bowl, and started fixing herself a bowl to take to work today, ha ha!  Same with Hubby.   I never missed the meat in it.

I made some skillet cornbread to go with it too.  It's your basic bread, but baked in the cast iron skillet.  Yum.  


To figure out a dinner tonight?  Using my "pretend root cellar" freezer, and pantry?  I have no idea, but I will be shuffling things around to come up with something good.

Hubby took one bite, and looked and me and said, "you definitely didn't lose your kitchen skills."  He devoured his first bowl standing up.  I kid you not.  

Note:  When I used frozen garden tomatoes/jalapenos, they already contain water when thawed, so I do not add the extra water.

Slow-Cooker Vegetarian Chili With Sweet Potatoes
1 medium red onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
kosher salt and black pepper
1 28-ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
1 15.5-ounce can black beans, rinsed
1 15.5-ounce can kidney beans, rinsed
1 medium sweet potato (about 8 ounces), peeled and cut into 1⁄2-inch pieces
sour cream, sliced scallions, sliced radishes, and tortilla chips, for serving

  1. In a 4- to 6-quart slow cooker, combine the onion, bell pepper, garlic, chili powder, cumin, cocoa, cinnamon, 1 teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon black pepper. Add the tomatoes (and their liquid), beans, sweet potato, and 1 cup water.
  2. Cover and cook until the sweet potatoes are tender and the chili has thickened, on low for 7 to 8 hours  or on high for 4 to 5 hours (this will shorten total recipe time).
  3. Serve the chili with the sour cream, scallions, radishes, and tortilla chips.


Sam I Am...... said...

Thanks for the recipe! It sounds delish! I posted one today too which I think you and your family would like.

Kristina said...

Thanks Sam I Am, I'll take a look!

Debby Flowers said...

Looks great! I am doing vegetarian for the month of January, but also cooking meat things for the guys. I made 2 pots of chili on Monday (off work) and the vegetarian one turned out pretty well - I put bulgur in it to contribute texture - but I want to try this recipe too!
Thanks for sharing and so glad you are feeling better!

RB said...

When I was a kid, we stored all our potatoes in the basement, and around Thanksgiving of each year, we'd all go down to the basement, dump all the burlap sacks of potatoes out onto the floor and would knock the eyes off them. Then we'd put them back into the sacks until needed through the rest of the Winter. Any that had eyes on them come Spring, we'd cut into pieces leaving one eye a piece in each one, and those we'd plant. Course that was all maybe 60 years ago, and I don't know if that's still recommended now or not. I do know once they start turning green, they're not recommended for eating anymore, although we ate a good many green potatoes back in the old days.
The chili sounds real good - hearty and filling. I've also seen recipes for vegie chili using lentils that sounded good.
We had a good snowy blow here this morning. Nothing in the way of traffic is moving out here in the country, and we're staying put for now too.
God bless.

Kristina said...

Debby, I think you and your family will like it. My kids absolutely love it. Hubby ate his bowl standing up, it's that good. Yum.

Kristina said...

RB, we do not have a basement, or I'd be using it for sure. We really want to dig that root cellar, but a tree needs cut down first. I am really hoping the tree is coming down early this year (before the garden is put in).