Learning each and every day

My quest to edify myself a bit every day

Day 232 – August 10

Boy, it’s been slim pickings around here this week. I didn’t watch the Olympics much this wee (NBC’s prime time coverage was less than thrilling), so I’m not sure why there wasn’t much learning. Maybe I was busy putting into practice all of the new things I’ve learned. (ha ha)

So I bought a vegetarian cookbook at an estate sale today, and I’m pretty excited about it. Good vegetarian cookbooks are hard to come by. Either they call for vegetarian “meat”, which is expensive, or they call for obscure ingredients that are tricky to find and expensive. This particular book is quite promising: great photos, easy to find ingredients, a good variety. I just wanted to go home and cook a whole bunch of the recipes in the book, that’s how great they looked. I settled on “Mexican 3-bean chili stew”. It was pretty good. I like a bit more flavor in my stews, so I may tweak things a bit next time. I didn’t have all of the ingredients (shocking, I know), so I’m sure that made a difference. Maybe next time I’ll try it as written=)

Mexican 3-bean chili stew (from vegetarian: a collection of over 100 recipes

Serves 6
5oz/3/4 cup each dried black beans, cannellini beans and pinto beans, soaked overnight in separate bowls in water to cover (I used canned beans)
2T olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 red bell peppers, seeded and diced
2 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
1/2 t cumin seeds, chopped
1 t coriander seeds, crushed
1 t dried oregano
1/2 – 2 t chili powder
3 T tomato paste
lb 12oz/800 g canned chopped tomatoes
1 t sugar
1 t salt
2 1/2 cup vegetable stock
3 T chopped fresh cilantro

1. Drain the beans, put in separate pans, and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and boil vigorously for 10-15 minutes, then reduce the heat and let simmer 35-45 minutes until just tender. Drain and set aside.

2. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottom pan over medium heat. Add the onion and bell peppers and cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes, or until softened.

3. Add the garlic, cumin and coriander seeds, and oregano and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds until the garlic is beginning to color. Add the chili powder and tomato paste and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, sugar, salt, beans, and stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover and let simmer, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes.

4. Stir in the fresh cilantro. Ladle into individual warmed bowls and serve immediately.



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