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Monday, February 27, 2017

National Chili Day with Two Cooks

Who likes chili – you do right? Well I totally do. I’ve told you how much I like making frito boats, or “walking tacos” as they’re called in other parts of the country.

I have many memories of my mom heating up a can of Nalley’s chili as a quick post swim meet dinner for my sisters and I. And while I’m not going to lie, this modern mom sure does enjoy the ease of just cracking open a can of ready made chili for a quick dinner, there is something delicious about making your very own homemade chili.

Do you remember me sharing with you that many years ago (and I do mean many), we had a café in downtown San Luis Obispo? Now we didn’t do it because we wanted something else to do, quite the contrary - the catering company was still in its beginning years and was steadily growing, but we desperately needed our own space. We found ourselves being gently kicked out of the restaurant kitchen we had been using when we first started but as luck would have it the café presented itself at just the right moment.

I would never wish this particular business decision on anyone – two startups at the exact same time? What were we thinking? Not to mention we had a two year old at home. Yep, we were mental. However, we did come up with some fabulous recipes that we continued to use year after year, one of which became our signature chili for Two Cooks Catering. 

Up until now the recipe has been kept under lock & key. People always asked for it – but we’d never share because it was a regular on our menu and we used it for our wholesale accounts. In some respects I feel like this chili hit a local cult status of sorts – people practically stalked us to find out where they could find it - wine event, wholesale, school fundraisers, you name it.

But lucky for you - now that we have closed Two Cooks I don’t mind sharing it with you. I know there are going to be some very happy residents in San Luis Obispo when folks realize I’m letting this go public. 

Plus added bonus for the working mom’s out there, if you make enough of this and have the freezer space bingo – modern mom dilemma solved – just pull it from the freezer for a quick dinner everyone will love.

I totally challenge you to make this and serve it to company – I guarantee your guests will never even know it’s vegan! For an added treat bake up a batch of your favorite corn bread and serve them together.

YIELD: 1.5 gallons

Part one - add these ingredients to a large stock pot and sautee for 10 minutes
  • 3 Onions
  • 1.5 Green bell pepper
  • 1.5 Red bell pepper
  • 1.5oz Chopped garlic
  • 3oz Canola oil
  • ¼ of a Pasilla pepper (small dice)
  • ½ of a Jalapeno pepper (minced)

Part two - mix these in with the first set of ingredients and sautee
  • 2T New Mexico chili powder
  • 2T Cumin powder
  • 2T Smoked paprika (prefer McCormick)
  • 1T Regular paprika

Part three - add the below to the first two sets of ingredients, simmer 20-30 minutes
  • 50oz Pinto beans – canned, rinsed & drained
  • 3c Kidney beans – canned, rinsed & drained
  • 3c Black beans – canned, rinsed & drained
  • 2c Garbanzo beans – canned, rinsed & drained
  • 2c Corn
  • 30oz Crushed tomato – canned, with liquid
  • 2c Vegetable stock
  • 1 piece Soyrizo – 12oz in size (brand at Trader Joe's is also GF)
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/3 can tomato paste (optional)

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