Saturday, December 6, 2008

The Faculty Holiday Party Potluck

Apart from seeing how many nouns in a row I could use adjectively, this post is about the holiday party yesterday.

Madame's department chair is vegetarian, so whenever we go to a party where she will be, we like to take something vegetarian – because for vegetarians these events can be tricky indeed. Last weekend we had been hiking up in the Palomar Mountain State Park and had a pretty good vegetarian chili for lunch, so thought it a good idea to make one for the party. No it was nothing like the one up at Palomar Mountain, but it turned out well and it was all eaten up, so we did something right.



1T + 1t vegetable oil

2 Medium onions (Not sweet, use yellow or white), diced

6 cloves garlic, diced – not pureed

4 t Paprika

2 T cumin - ground finely

1 t dried oregano

2 t finely ground black pepper

1 t salt

2 Jalapenos or other moderately hot peppers - chopped finely

1 Chipotle – whole

3T Chopped parsley

1 Bay leaf

2 Medium carrots - rough chopped medium

1 Large green pepper – rough chopped medium

2 large (28 oz) cans plum tomatoes

2 15 oz cans red kidney beans – drained and rinsed. (Divided use)

1 15 oz can black beans – drained and rinsed

2 large packets frozen corn (not sure of the size, but about 2lbs in total)


In a sauté pan, heat the 1T oil until shimmering and sweat the onions. After 3 or 4 minutes add the garlic and continue to sweat. The onions should not take on any color. In another (non stick) skillet heat the 1t oil and add the cumin, pepper, paprika and fry gently. When they begin to be aromatic, dump them into the onion/garlic pan and combine well. Toss in the carrots, green pepper, jalapenos and allow to warm through for a few minutes.


Place the onion mixture into the bottom of a "crock pot" or other slow cooker. Add the bay leaf, salt, chipotle, oregano, tomatoes (including their liquid) to the mixture and mix well. Puree 1 can of the red beans (I did it on the chopping board with the knife to save dirtying the food processor). Add the pureed beans and the remainder of the kidney beans + the back beans and mix. Add the frozen corn and mix again.

Set the slow cooker for at least 10 hours on low or 6 hours on high, cover and ignore the dish.


Remove the chipotle and the bay leaf and then serve piping hot with the traditional chili accompaniments of sour cream, raw onion and grated cheese.

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