Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Peanut Butter Chili

Today was one of those days in Minnesota where you realize that Mother Nature hates you and wants to see you suffer.  We've had a very snowy winter and everyone thought we were finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Then another round of snow came today and shocked us back into reality!  With the snowy, March weather I wanted something warm and comforting for dinner.  Because I went to the gym after work, I wanted that dinner fast!  Thankfully I had some chili in my freezer leftover from my Superbowl party this year. 

This chili is amazing.  Even my friend Lauren who hates chili tried a bowl at my Superbowl party and actually liked it!  This recipe is adapted from the Serious Eats website mostly so I could throw everything in a slow cooker the morning of the game and let it simmer until kickoff.  It's thick, spicy, and the hint of peanut taste is oddly satisfying.  The peanut butter is not overwhelming, but it adds a little something extra to your traditional chili.  This is the perfect dinner treat for the big game or out of the freezer on an unexpected snow day.

Olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped fine or grated (keep pulp and juice if grated)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 14.5-oz cans diced tomatoes
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp chili powder
2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 12-oz can tomato paste
2 cups vegetable stock
1/2 cup smooth, unsweetened peanut butter
1 15-oz can kidney beans, rinsed
1 15-oz can black beans, rinsed
1 15-oz can chili beans (kidney beans in a chili sauce), drained
1 15-oz can white beans, rinsed
1 15-oz can sweet corn, drained
Salt & Pepper

Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a skillet.  Saute the onions until translucent, about 5 minutes (if you're using grated onions it'll cook a little faster).  Add the garlic and saute another two minutes.  I did this first because I wanted to break down the onions/garlic even more, but it's not necessary -- you can just throw these ingredients raw right into the slow cooker.

Turn on a large slow cooker and add the cooked onions and garlic.  Add all of the other ingredients and stir to combine the tomato paste and peanut butter.  Omit some of the beans if you don't have the space in your slow cooker!  Heat on low or medium if you're going to cook it during the day -- 5-6 hours.  Heat on high if you have 2-3 hours.

Top with your favorite chili toppings -- scallions, sour cream, or cheese.  And to round out the meal you can serve over rice or with tortilla chips.  Leftovers keep very well in the freezer!
Makes about 6-8 servings.

** If you want to serve this in a more timely fashion, saute the onions and garlic as directed above in a large stockpot.  Then add the diced tomatoes and spices and cook for a few minutes.  Add tomato paste, stock, and peanut butter, stir and then simmer for 10 minutes.  Add the remaining ingredients (beans and corn), reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes.  Serve as directed above.

1 comment:

  1. I'm not usually a chili fan either but this sounds strangely yummy...