Leftover Vegetable Chili

In the past I have evoked all the passion and certitude of Patrick Henry when proclaiming, When life gives you the sausage, make chili.” Somewhat paradoxically, I can meekly murmur, with all the fire and conviction of Boober Fraggle, “If you someone gives you a bunch of passed-over veggies, you can turn them into chili… I guess.”

Vegetables chili....ho hum.

Vegetables chili….ho hum.

The lesson being, not all leftovers are created equal. Let’s hope these vegetables make a tasty chili without all of the harmful side effects.

Chili Venn

Chili Venn

DAY 105

Ingredients

2 C celery, chopped
1 C carrot, chopped
1 C jicama, chopped
1 dried New Mexican Chile, cut into small pieces
1T dried onion flakes
1 C vegetable juice
1 T chili powder
1 t garlic salt
¼ t cayenne pepper
½ t celery salt
½ C black olives, sliced
1 (14oz) can diced tomatoes
½ C diced fresh Roma tomatoes

Directions:

Toss ingredients into crock pot and mix.

Cook on low 9 hours.

Leftover Vegetable Chili

Leftover Vegetable Chili

Tasting Notes:

My first impression was one of surprise. The meager 1/4t of cayenne set this chili on an unexpectedly spicy trajectory.

The good: The recipe managed to obliterate our cache of leftover vegetables. The zesty heat imparted by the cayenne was welcome, especially on this particularly cold day.

The bad: There was too much celery for my taste. There could be a better balance of texture and flavor with this offering.

The ITP was not excited by this chili. Too spicy was the verdict (and, at least for Pre, a VERY unfavorable meat to vegetable ratio was evident).

Suggestion: In order to offset the fibrous texture of the celery, shrimp would be a welcome addition. Not only would the soft texture provide a nice balance, the sweetness of the shrimp would do well to round out the flavor of this chili while imparting a Cajun feel. Many cooks will throw beans into a chili such as this one. No way, seafood is the superior alternative.

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