Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Avoid The Grocery Store With Pantry Chili

Easy recipe with simple pantry ingredients.

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What a Time This Is
Are you feeling like our world has been turned upside down? With the fear of you or a loved one getting ill or facing the inevitable economic toll of this pandemic, and the necessary social isolation, how could you not? 

There are so many implications from this crisis that effect us. This week, my daughter had to cancel her wedding. It was devastating to both of us. But so far, we are all healthy so putting it in prospective, we will have the wedding in better times - the most important thing is to stay well and stay positive.

So how do we cheer ourselves up? It’s not easy but one way is to focus on things that you enjoy doing or attack this situation as an adventure. The biggest thing that calms me and brings me joy is cooking. Food is comfort and stocking our pantry and planning for less frequent visits to the grocery store takes some planning and can be a fun challenge.

I stocked our pantry with lots of beans, both canned and dry. I bought rice, pasta, quinoa, polenta, oats and other grains. Canned salmon, anchovies and sardines can provide lots of omega-3 and canned clams provide a high amount of vitamin B12. If you have room in your freezer, buy frozen vegetables as they have nutrients as potent as fresh and less sodium than canned. Of course buy fresh vegetables if they are available and you are still able to get to the grocery store. But keeping a stocked pantry and freezer is important in this time of uncertainty.

Here’s an easy recipe where, except for the onion, has ingredients that are readily found in your pantry. I made this for lunch today with pinto and great northern beans but feel free to substitute those with black beans, kidney or any of your favorite beans. Beans are a great source of protein and fiber!

The spice in this chili comes from the Rotel tomatoes. They come in three flavors – original, mild and hot. I prefer Rotel original since it has just enough spice for me. You can enjoy a bowl of this chili as is or serve it over a grain, pasta, or a baked potato.

Use two cans of your favorite beans,
a can of corn and Rotel tomatoes

Don't drain the beans or the corn.
Their liquids add to the base of the chili

Vegan, Dairy and Gluten Free
Makes 6 Servings

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1½ cups chopped onion
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 can pinto beans with its juice
1 can great northern beans with its juice
1 can corn niblets with its juice
1 can Rotel tomatoes, original flavor

In a 5-quart Dutch oven, heat the olive oil. Add the chopped onions and sauté on medium-low heat until they soften, 5 to 8 minutes, but do not brown. Stir in the garlic powder and chili powder.

Add the cans of beans and corn with their juices and the Rotel tomatoes. Stir well and bring to a simmer. Cook uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes until the chili is heated through and slightly thickened.

Serve as is or over rice, quinoa, polenta, your favorite pasta, or a baked potato. I like to add a dollop of vegan Tofutti sour cream.


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