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Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Spicy Mexican Veg Chili with Medley of Peppers

Hats off to my co-worker T. O. F.  for having Chili cook off this time of  year, which is perfect for all the warm colors of fall, with little chill in the air, that makes the heat of the peppers more tolerable and hearty taste of beans and veggies makes many hungry souls satisfied.

Every year she inspires me to make my vegetarian very spicy chili. So this year I made this one and garnished it with my "Red Hot Spicy Chocolate Bark"(recipe on this blog)  along with cheese, guac and green onions cilantro and red onions.... and for creativity I named it Spicy Mexican Chocolate Chili...but for the basic recipe for this blog I will call it Spicy Mexican Veg Chili with Medley of Peppers.

There were 28 entries all together in this cook off and everything with different kind of  meat with very creative ideas.  Mine was the only lonely vegetarian Chili :( I had no chance of winning but just getting together and taking part in it was half the fun. Needless to say I had a very good time. Thank you T.O.F :) and your loving family that adds additional zest to the event and just makes it well worth taking part in this cook off :) I was glad to be part of it this year too.
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil(divided in two parts)
  • 4 teaspoon cumin seeds (divide in two parts)
  • 4 dried whole red round chili peppers
  • 4 dried whole red cayenne peppers
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 black large cardamom pods
  • 2 sticks of 1 inch cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon of asafetida divided in two parts (optional) 
  • 4 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 teaspoon ginger paste or 1.5"root of peeled and grated fresh ginger
  • 8 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 3 small chopped Zucchini
  • 6 red radishes chopped
  • 2 large carrots chopped
  • 4 tomatoes chopped (I grind tomatoes and carrots in food processor together gives a nice colorful paste and carrots cook faster this way)
  • 2 Hungarian peppers chopped
  • 1 large red pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 large green pepper, seeded and chopped
  •  2 sweet small yellow, red and orange variety of peppers chopped
  • 1 large yellow pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1-2 large jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped 
  • 1 oz pack of sliced snow white of portabello mushroom chopped
  • 2 MAGGI Vegetarian Bouillon Cubes make broth per instructions
  • 4 cups pf Black tea made from 4 Lipton or Tetley teabags
  • 1 (32- ounce) can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 (14-ounce) can Black beans 
  • 1  (14-ounce) can Lima beans
  • 2 (15 ounce) can of Pinto beans
  • 1 (15 ounce) can of Harmony beans

  • 1 (15 ounce) can of Garbanzo beans
  • 1 (14-ounce) can Dark red kidney beans
  • 1 (14 ounce) can of Cannellini beans
  • 1 can of chili beans or any other beans you can get from your pantry
  • 1 can of Kernel of corn
  • 1/4 cup of sliced pickled jalapenos
  • 1/4 cup of taco seasoning
  • 4-5 tablespoon ground cumin powder
  • 1-2 tablespoons cayenne pepper powder
  • 1 tablespoon of crushed red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne hot pepper sauce
  • 2 tablespoon of garlic chili sauce (optional)
  • 4 tablespoon of Spanish paprika powder
  • 2 teaspoons of Turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 cups of water
  • 3/4 cup dry red wine
  • 1 teaspoon of unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 bottle of beer (12 oz)
  • 1 can vegetarian refried beans
  • 1 pouch of Madras lentils and red beans from Costco (optional)
  • 1/2 cup ghost pepper cheese sauce (optional or

you can use any cheese sauce)
  • 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro
  • Lime juice for 1 fresh lime
  • 1 tablespoon of Tamarind paste
For Garnish:
  • 8 ounces (2 cups shredded) spicy Monterey jack or extra sharp Cheddar
  • 1 bunch chopped green onions chopped with whites and greens
  • 1 Spanish red onions chopped
  • 2 fresh Jalapenos chopped
  • 1 Hungarian pepper chopped

  • 4 fresh tomatoes diced
  • ½ cup Chopped cilantro
  • 1 container of Sour cream
  • Blue and red corn tortilla chips or black bean tortilla chips, for dipping
  • Pickled Jalapeno  slices
  • 2 cups of Guacamole or fresh avocado slices from two avocados

• Over moderate heat, add divided oil to two  deep pots
• When oil is hot add divided cumin seeds and
asefitida to these two pots
• To one pot add all the chopped vegetables and salt and saute until vegetables are soft, do not cover to retain color of veggies. Stir occasionally
• To another pot add cinnamon stick, bay leaves and dried chili peppers
• Then to this pot add onions, ginger and garlic.
• Saute until light brown
• Add sauteed and softened vegetables from another pot.
• Add veggie broth, tomatoes, beer, all the beans except refried beans and madras lentil paste
• Season the all the dried powder spices, hot
sauce, cocoa powder and salt.
• Add red wine, black tea and salt to taste.
• Thicken chili by stirring in refried beans and Madras lentil paste.
• Simmer over low heat about 10-15 minutes with occasional stirring
• Add Tamarind paste and lime juice, chopped slices of jalapenos if desired and mix well
• Add Ghost pepper cheese sauce
• Add Cilantro and mix well
• Serve bowls of chili and top with shredded Monterrey Jack or cheddar cheese, green onions chopped peppers,  cilantro, and tomatoes and
sour cream if desired.
• Top with guac or avocado slices
• Serve hot with tortilla chips on side for dipping.


  • You may omit or add any beans that you like or dislike.
  • Before adding to chili, you may want to rinse all the canned beans and corn under water in a colander to wash off additives and salts added to the canned beans and corn.
  • You can use medley of dry beans, just soak them for few hours and cook them in pressure cooker, if cooking them in pressure cooker, you may want to add little baking soda, salt to taste and tea bags to bring out color, but cans of beans are easier to use for large group of people.
  • This recipe yields about 8 quarts of chili so it is lot of chili, you can adjust to your size of party.
  • You can omit any ingredient that you are not fond of.
  • You can be creative with different kinds of veggies. I love Okra and many times I have thought of adding Okra to it. You may want to try it, but be sure to stir fry Okra before adding to cut down on the stickiness (I call it slimy nature) of this particular veggie.
  • I personally don't like Celery but you can add it if you like.
  • Heat can be adjusted by cutting down on hot sauce and amount of Cayenne peppers and Jalapenos :) Potatoes can be added to cut down the heat, but Chili with potatoes may not freeze well and you may need to utilize it sooner.
  • Tamarind is used for tangy taste, if not available you may add more lemon or lime juice and can adjust the amount based on your desire for tangy taste.
  • You can easily freeze portions of this chili, so you can make it in large amount in fall and take small servings out of freezer and serve in cold snowy weather to warm up your taste buds and clear your sinuses :)
  • It can be served with Rice or Naan or any of your favorite warm bread.

 Enjoy :)

 Recipe and Photographs by Surekha
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