Sunday, February 21, 2010

Mark Bittman is a food genius

NY Times food writer and author of How to Cook Everything (and How to Cook Everything Vegetarian) literally makes cooking seem effortless. I wholeheartedly agree with almost all of the 'outs' in his article about pantry basics (with the exception of canned beans. I think they are delicious and way easier than dealing with dried).

The following recipe was inspired by the vegetable chili recipe in How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. It is a great starting point and has endless possibilities. It is amazing served over corn bread but I was trying to be healthy...There are lots of recipes for vegetarian chili out there but this one gets a great texture from the bulgur.

Vegetable Chili with Bulgur
serves 4

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 zucchini, chopped
3 roasted red peppers, chopped (I used jarred ones in oil)
2 tablespoons minced garlic
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 ancho chili peppers, cleaned and chopped
1 28oz can san marzano crushed tomatoes
1 quart chicken stock (or vegetable, or water)
2 tablespoons chili powder
salt and pepper
1 cup bulgur
1 cup pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup kidney beans, drained and rinsed
sliced scallions and sharp cheddar cheese for garnish

Put oil in a large pot over medium high heat. When hot, add the onion, zucchini, and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste until its evenly distributed and begins to color, another minute or two. Add the red pepper, chiles, tomato, stock, chili powder, and salt and pepper.
Bring to a boil and then turn the heat down to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally until slightly thickened (30 minutes minimum but the longer the better). Stir in the bulgur and cook for 10 minutes, then turn off the heat and let sit until the bulgur is tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in beans, garnish and serve.

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