Wednesday, January 30, 2013



Our poor kitty, Matilda must be wondering what the heck is going on in her life since we adopted her just a few weeks ago.  I bet Matilda feels like she’s been abducted by aliens.  In three weeks she’s been to the vet three times. 

She must be thinking, “First I get grabbed by the scruff of the neck and throw into a black bag that gets zipped up.  I can see out through the mesh so I know I get carried off in some weird machine that takes me to this scary place.  I know there are others there like me, I can smell their fear.” 

“The lights are really bright and I get taken out of the bag and on to a cold table.  Then some strange person pokes and prods me.”  

“The last time I fell into a deep sleep and when I awoke I was in pain and my teeth were all missing” (She had 12 teeth removed, she only has 9 remaining; boo hoo.)

“Today the stranger put an object up in a place that made me very uncomfortable” (She felt warm, so her temperature had to be taken, we’ll leave it at that.)

“I’m so confused!”

Little does my poor baby know that she has to return to the vet in ten more days because she’s a hot mess!  Did I mention our cheap cat is now a very expensive cat!

Any hoo…Since I posted a White Bean Turkey Chili  recipe last week, it’s only fitting that there should be a Vegetarian White Bean Chili, isn’t it?

It’s very similar to White Bean Turkey Chili, so some of the photos may look familiar.  The difference in the this chili from the turkey version (other than the meat of course) is the addition of dried mushrooms which adds a nice depth of flavor and texture, and the use of zucchini; which helps to balance out the heat from the chili peppers.

I was so excited that I had some left over chili to make a delicious Chili Taco Salad!

Here’s what you do.

Soak the cannellini beans the night before, according to the package directions.

Add to a Dutch oven over medium heat a table spoon of olive oil, the onions, jalapenos, garlic and some salt and pepper.
When the onions are translucent add the cumin, allspice and oregano, cook for 3 to 5 minutes more; this allows the spices to toast a little.

This is my little bottle of tequilla add it and cook until it's evaporated.

Now add the drained beans...

...The vegetable stock (low or no sodium please) and the water...

...the dried mushrooms go in now too along with a bay leaf.  I get a big ol' container of dried mushrooms at Costco and through them into all kinds of dishes.

Bring the chili to a simmer, then partially cover the pan with a lid and turn the heat down to medium low.

In the mean time roast the poblano pepper.  There are full instructions on how to roast and peel poblano peppers on my post for White Bean Turkey Chili.  Dice the roasted pepper into about 1/2 inch pieces.
After the chili has simmered for an hour, season with salt and pepper if necessary and add the diced poblanos and the corn meal.  Put the lid back on the way it was, and simmer for another 15 minutes.
Add the zucchini and cilantro.  Put the lid back and simmer for another 15 to 30 minutes, until the beans are soft.

Vegetarian White Bean Chili tastes yummy on it's own...
But if you like; top it off with a little Monterey Jack, or white Cheddar cheese.


Serves 4

½             lb.             Dry cannellini beans
                               Olive oil 
1                              Small onion, medium dice
1                              Jalapenos, diced fine (with or without seeds it’s up to you)
2              cloves        Garlic, minced
2 ½           tsp.          Cumin
½             tsp.          Allspice
2              tsp.           Oregano, preferably Mexican
1                              Bay leaf
1/4           cup           Tequila
2              cups          Vegetable stock, low or no sodium
1              cup           Water
¼             cup           Dried mushrooms, chopped
                                Salt and Pepper to taste
1                              Poblano pepper
1 ½          cups           Zucchini, large dice
1 ½          Tbsp.          Corn meal
2              Tbsp.          Cilantro, chopped

  1.        The night before; soak the beans according to the package directions.
  2.       When you are ready to make the chili drain and rinse the soaked beans, set to the side.
  3.       Add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil to the bottom of a Dutch oven, along with the onions, jalapenos and garlic, season with a little salt and pepper. Do not add the poblano pepper.  Cook over medium heat.
  5.       When the onions are translucent, add the cumin, allspice, and oregano, stir and cook for about 3 to 5 minutes longer.
  6.       Add the tequila, and cook until the tequila has evaporated.
  7.       Add the drained beans, the vegetable stock, water, bay leaf, and dried mushrooms.  Bring the liquid up to a simmer, check for seasoning, add more salt and pepper if needed.  Then partially cover the pot with a lid, and turn the heat to medium low.
  8.       Meanwhile; preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  9.       Wash and dry the poblano pepper.  Rub the skin all over with a little olive oil.  Lay the poblano on a sheet pan.  Roast in the hot oven for about 15 minutes, turning half way through.  The skin should blister and char.
  10.   When the poblano has roasted, remove it to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap for 10 to 15 minutes.  This will make it easier to remove the skin and the seeds from the poblano.  Cut the poblano pepper into about ½ inch dice.
  11.   After the chili has simmered for an hour, stir in the roasted poblano pepper and the cornmeal.  Return the lid, and simmer for another 15 minutes.
  12.  Add the diced zucchini, stir in the chopped cilantro, and simmer for another 15 to 30 minutes, until the beans are soft.
Serve Vegetarian White Bean Chili with corn bread, tortilla chips or rice.  Top with cheese if desired.
Vegetarian White Bean Chili freezes well.

I shared this recipe at:


  1. I've never made a vegetarian chili before but this is totally inspiring me. I wish I had that big pot of it now. I love all the ingredients it has in it so I'm sure I'd love it.

  2. You know, I never thought to add tequila (I'm a dope). I love the flavors in here...I def. wouldn't even miss the meat!