The best part about being in the food industry is meeting other people who are equally if not more passionate about their craft. I have been lucky enough to work the a new company called RawSpiceBar that is making freshly ground, small batch, custom spice blends. What makes them even more unique is that they provide monthly subscriptions that come in the mail. That’s right…it gets delivered straight to you! Not only do you receive 3-4 perfectly portioned custom spice blends but you also receive recipe cards, tasting notes, history and other fun tips. You can use the spices in the recipes provided or get creative and add them into your own dishes.
I took their Ground Chile blend and Posole Spices and added it to my Vegetarian Chili. Let me know tell you…it was awesome. I just opened up their cute packets and sprinkled it in there. Plus I didn’t have to buy eight new jars of spices just for them to sit in my pantry and get old. These spices are high quality, freshly ground and authentic (no MSG in here people).
My Vegetarian Chili is perfect for meat-eaters, omnivores, vegetarians and vegans alike. Trust me, I love meat in a serious way but this is just as fulfilling and hearty as a meat-filled bowl of chili.
I start my chili with onions, a combination of red and green bell peppers, poblano peppers and serrano peppers. This creates an extremely flavorful base for the Vegetarian Chili. If you don’t start with really intense and pungent ingredients then your chili will fall flat.
Speaking of intense ingredients the RawSpiceBar’s Ground Chile Blend includes New Mexican Chiles, Ancho Chiles, Guajillo Chiles and Arbol Chiles. Talk about flavor! This gives the Vegetarian Chili a medium-spicy and intensely smoky profile with just a hint of fruitiness. I also added their Posole Spices that include toasted cumin, Mexican oregano and coriander to the chili. It adds that smoky, earthy and savory note that we all know and love.
I like to use three different types of beans in my chili to add different textures and flavor profiles. Three is the perfect number in this recipe. I’ve made versions with five different types of beans and I just find it to be totally overwhelming. So many beans! I can’t even handle it. So I chose my three favorites (yes…I have favorite beans for my chili). The meaty and dense kidney bean, the creamy and rich pinto bean and the dark knight black bean. Did I mention I love beans? Yeahhhh…get some! (Read my recipes for Turkey Sausage, White Bean and Escarole Stew or my Cheap Ham and White Bean Soup).
Finally, I reveal my secret ingredient. Yes there’s a secret (soon to be not-so-secret) ingredient in my Vegetarian Chili! Is it beer? No! Dark chocolate? No! Cinnamon? Hells to the no! It’s red wine. Yep…you read correctly. This is actually my Mom’s secret ingredient that she puts in her famous “C’s Chili.” She has been making it since I was a little kid and it might even be better than me. Well maybe. Red wine is the perfect addition because it adds acidity, sweetness and richness to the chili. No one would ever guess it but it doesn’t taste nearly as good without it.
Not only is my Vegetarian Chili healthy, flavorful and filling but it uses amazing spices provided by RawSpiceBar. They’re creating a new & easier way to discover, taste & incorporate the most flavorful
spices from around the world. Their spice experts, many of whom are award winning chefs, bring you unique spice blends using the highest quality spice ingredients, with an unprecedented focus on quality, flavor & freshness you can’t get anywhere else. You need to give them a try!
- ½ tbsp grapeseed oil (or other vegetable oil)
- 1½ cups diced onion
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup diced red bell pepper
- 1 cup diced green bell pepper
- ¾ cup diced poblano pepper
- 1 small serrano pepper, diced
- 1 packet RawSpiceBar Ground Chiles
- 1 packet RawSpiceBar Posole Spices
- 28 oz canned whole peeled tomatoes, crushed by hand
- 1 cup dry red wine
- 1 tbsp pureed chipotle en adobo
- 2 cups vegetable stock or water
- 15 oz can kidney beans, no salt added, rinsed and drained
- 15 oz can pinto beans, no salt added, rinsed and drained
- 15 oz can black beans, no salt added, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup frozen corn kernels
- ½ cup cilantro, chopped, plus additional for garnish
- ¼ cup scallions, sliced for garnish
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Heat a large pot over medium heat and add grapeseed oil.
- Once the oil is hot add onions, garlic, bell peppers, poblano pepper and serrano pepper.
- Sauté over medium heat until softened, about 7-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
- Next add the RawSpiceBar packets and sauté for 1 minute until fragrant.
- Next add the crushed tomatoes, red wine, chipotle en adobo, vegetable stock (or water) and the beans. Give the pot a good stir to combine everything thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.
- Allow the chili to simmer for 1 hour, remembering to stir often.
- After the chili has simmered, add the frozen corn kernels and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
- Add the cilantro when you are ready to serve and garnish with extra cilantro on top and scallions.