I know the title seems somewhat bizarre, but the slight "hint" of semi-sweet chocolate gives this vegetarian chili a real depth of flavor. It reminds me somewhat of a sweet, yet spicy mole sauce. This recipe was adapted from one I found in the "Moosewood Restaurant Celebrates" cookbook.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 1⁄2 cups chopped onions
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 stalk celery, sliced
- 1 -2 jalapeno chile, minced
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 2 teaspoons oregano
- 1⁄2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 pinch ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground black pepper, to taste
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt, to taste
- 1 1⁄2 cups chopped bell peppers (red and green are nice)
- 2 (14 1/2 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 (14 1/2 ounce) can diced tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (optional)
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 1⁄2 ounces semisweet chocolate (about 1/4 cup)
- vegan cheddar cheese or tofu sour cream or scallion, for serving
- In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and sauté until onions become soft and translucent, about 10 minutes.
- Add the celery and chile, cover and cook for another five minutes more.
- Reduce the heat and stir in spices, (cumin, oregano, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, chili powder, black pepper, salt) along with the bell peppers. Cover again and cook for another five minutes. Stir often to keep the spices from burning. If the pan gets too dry add a little liquid from the diced tomatoes, or some water.
- Next, add the black beans, tomatoes, lime juice (if using) and soy sauce. Let the chili simmer on low for 5 to 10 minutes, until it thickens slightly and flavors combine.
- Stir in the chocolate. When chocolate has melted, taste to adjust the salt and pepper. Serve with topping of your choice. I like a bit of vegan cheese, sour "cream" and scallions.
- Chili can also makes a great filling to serve wrapped in flour tortillas, or in taco shells if you prefer.
Best. Chili. Ever. My S.O. and I simply adore this recipe, it has definitely become a staple in our house! We add corn to it as well (about 1 cup), eliminate the celery, and when we are feeling really decadent we use Green and Black's Organic Dark Chocolate (70% Cacao). We also use only one can of black beans and experiment with different beans for the second can (so far we have used spicy pinto beans and chili beans, which are both wonderful). We also use diced tomatoes with chiles, which is easier than cutting up fresh jalapenos. Thanks so much for this one Kozmmic Blues!
This was really good, but the suggested serving size is really small. Should be more like 400 cal/serving. Tasted good, but probably won't make again until I'm off my diet, especially because I'd like to add meat the next time go round. I just have to have meat in my chili!
Have had this recipe on the To Do List since Jan/08 ! Tonight seemed right -- but while the veggies were simmering, discovered I had NO CUMIN !! Bless DH' heart -- he immediately hit the road to the grocer, so I had cumin before everything simmered. Added everything except the chile, but had a heavy hand on the chili powder. Added semi-sweet chocolate bits, about 1 TBSP of BLACK cocoa, and 2 tsp of instant espresso powder. Have enough for another meal. This was entirely different and a most tasty and FILLING meal. Thanks for posting.