This non-traditional chili combines the richness of sautéed mushrooms and red wine with the familiar flavors of chili to give you one of my favorite dishes to enjoy in front of a fire with a glass of Cab Franc. It's also a bit more work as the mushroom mix needs to be cooked in batches, but believe me, it's worth it.
(Sciencey bits ahead, skip forward for recipe)
Black beans are a fantastic way to work protein into a veggie-based diet. In fact, a 1-cup serving of cooked black beans provides more than 15g of protein. For centuries, vegetarians all over the world have been getting ample amounts of protein by working legumes into their diet and completing the missing amino acids normally found in meats by combining their legume intake with whole grains such as rice, whole wheat breads etc.
In addition to being a fantastic source of fiber (almost 60% of your daily value), black beans are rich with other nutrients, including 180mg of omega-3 fatty acids per cup in the form of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Black beans also contain an impressive array of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory phyto-nutrients, and there are numerous studies connecting black bean intake with reduced risk of certain cancers, such as liver, breast, and especially colon cancer. Black beans are also a good source of antioxidant-promoting manganese, muscle-building protein, energy-producing magnesium, thiamin (vitamin B1), phosphorus and iron. SO. EAT UP.
Please salt responsibly.
Black Bean & Mushroom Chili
Serves 4-6 | Prep time: 20-25 min
1 pound dried black beans, rinsed and soaked overnight (or
6 cans, drained)
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup mustard seeds
1 large red onion, chopped
3 Tbsp chili powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds, or ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cardamom seeds, or ground cardamom
2 lb crimini mushrooms, sliced
1/2 lb shiitake mushrooms (optional)
8oz tomatillos, husked, chopped
1 cup red wine (never cook with something you wouldn't drink)
4 cups mushroom broth, or vegetable broth +1 cup water
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
2 Tbsp minced garlic
2-3 Tbsp minced canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (more or less depending on spice tolerance)
1 Tbsp kosher salt, or as desired
1 tsp black pepper
Optional toppings: sour cream, sliced green onions, cilantro, and a squeeze of fresh lime juice
Directions: You will need a 6-quart-sized crockpot.
1. Heat oil in a large, wide bottomed pan. Sauté spices, garlic, onions, and sliced mushrooms in batches. Then, deglaze the pan with chopped tomatillos and red wine (this step is optional, it lends a deeper flavor, but is not critical if time is short).
2. Throw the mushroom-onion-spice mix in the crock pot with the remaining ingredients.
3. Cook on high for 4-6 hrs (the longer the better!) cooking time will vary based on the age of the dried beans- older beans, longer cook. (If using canned, 4hrs)
4. Share, and enjoy!
Let me know what you think!