A few weeks back, I met Bret Thorn, Nation’s Restaurant News blogger, food reviewer for The Sun, and all around fun guy at the Padre Figlio soft opening. He mentioned on his blog that I looked “healthier” than he thought I would. Reminded me of the days when I’d tell people I was a vegetarian and they’d look me up and down, unabashedly, and declare, “You look too healthy to be a vegetarian!”
I suppose the idea of any kind of restricted diet equals unhealthy person.
Well, not this Allergic Girl. Healthy is my middle name. To create the best balance possible for my hectic lifestyle, I eat meat out and vegetarian/vegan at home. As I’m not home most nights, I make sure my larder is fully stocked with dry and shelf-stable goods that cook up quickly and easily.
One of my go-to recipes is veggie chili. Made with organic beans from Goya, diced canned tomatoes, chopped onions and garlic (local from the green market), and some spices, in less than 20 minutes from walking into my apt, I can sit down to a great and easy meal that is protein packed and vegetarian!
I like my chili a little spicy with some heat on the back of the tongue from hot pepper flakes and a dash of curry. I also like it a bit sweet which comes from a dollop of honey. Use these spices to your taste, play with what you like. I generally have the chili over organic basmati rice but any brown rice or whole grain like quinoa will be yummy. This recipe makes enough for one person for a few lunches. Or two people for dinner.
2-3 T olive oil
1 small yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
hot pepper flakes
cracked black pepper
1 T raw honey- to taste
1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes, no salt added
1 15 ounce can beans [red kidney bean or black beans but any beans will do] drained and rinsed.
Over low heat warm olive oil. Add onion and sweat until translucent, 5-7 minutes. Add chopped garlic and sauté until fragrant. Then add spices: chili powder and cumin should be the largest spice component. Then add dashes of cinnamon, curry, and hot pepper flakes. Stir to toast spices. Add tomatoes, raw honey, salt and pepper. Cook tomatoes down until the flavors start to intensify. Then add drained and rinsed beans [which are already cooked and only need warming through]. Once the beans are added, heat until flavors have blended. Adjust spices as necessary. Serve over piping hot buttered rice. [Use margarine or olive oil coated rice if you want it vegan].