Even More E2: 3 Bean Chili, Two Ways

I realize as I type this that I still need to make the E2 meatloaf. I just get side tracked! And this week I was put off my meal planning by the GIANT ENORMOUS POT OF CHILI that I made from this recipe. It says that it feeds 6 to 8. 6 to 8 what? Obviously not humans. Maybe professional wrestlers. Or Hulks. But this made easily 8+ servings for us, plus 2 quart-size freezer bags of leftover chili. I’m pretty sure that my grandchildren will be eating that chili someday.

As you can plainly see, this chili is not sexy (which begs the question: can chili be sexy?). But it is packed with basically every form of protein they could think of, with three different beans and a whole pound of tofu. As for taste? It has a lot of ground coriander, but no cumin, so it doesn’t exactly taste like traditional chili. It’s sweet from the addition of carrots, apple (see? What isn’t in this chili!), and molasses. It’s not something I would necessarily make again–probably because if you’ve made it once, you have enough leftovers to never need to make  a second batch!

To use up even more of this chili, I decided to make chili dogs for dinner this week as well. Because the texture of the original version is so…chunky…I ran it through the blender a bit to get it the right texture for hot dog chili. Behold!

The daiya really made the difference, giving it an authentic chili dog flavor. And I made the buns myself, using the same recipe for rolls from Thanksgiving. I’ve made that bread twice since we had it on November 24th, so you know I love it. Or I just love carbs. Whatever.

Recipe from the Engine 2 Diet.

Black Bean Salsa Dip

I was trying to make a sort of black bean hummus with this recipe, but failed to realize that the liquid-to-bean ratio would make it distinctly wetter than hummus. No worries! It tastes great, is essentially fat-free, and is easily scoop-able on a chip.

Black Bean Salsa Dip (makes…3 cups? I forgot to measure and I ate a ton of it):

  • 1 15-oz. can of black beans (or two cups of cooked beans)
  • 2 T onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 medium-sized tomato, roughly chopped
  • 1 T cilantro
  • 1  jalapeño
  • juice of one lime
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar

Add all ingredients to your food processor or blender and pulse until smooth. Enjoy!

 

E2 Week: Sweet Potato Bowl

You have to admit, even if this recipe from the Engine 2 Diet didn’t taste good, it looks beautiful. Also, I got to eat an entire half of an avocado! I haven’t had that much avocado in one sitting in ages…so good. I partially decided to make this because it sounded so strange. Mango? Sweet potato? Balsamic Vinegar? Lime juice? Cilantro? It was a weird mishmash of different textures and tastes–mostly sweet and sour–that ended up working really well together. The only problem–too much cilantro. Normally I love the stuff, but it fought with the other flavors. Still–for a dish with no seasoning–this was amazingly flavorful. I’d for sure make it again, but I’d cut back on the pepper (so much bell pepper!) and, of course, the cilantro. Nice job, E2!

 

Aztec Corn Soup

Is it the amaranth that makes this soup Aztec? I’m just excited to find a recipe that uses amaranth, which I adore. Even though I can’t make it without burning it, and myself, I love the taste and texture of amaranth. If you’ve never had it, it’s like tiny baby quinoa. Maybe with a little bit nuttier flavor, and if you manage to brown it a little, it tastes sort of like fried chicken. So, if you miss that taste–amaranth is your friend.

This soup is going into my dinner rotation STAT. It only has a few ingredients, and all of them are something I love. Not to mention that it’s a protein powerhouse as well–corn, amaranth and black beans. And the green chilies! So many chilies! We were in heaven over here.

Thanks Happy Herbivore!

 

Enchiladas!

Mmm…Happy Herbivore’s Smoky Black Bean Enchiladas. My photo does not look a THING like hers from the cookbook–my enchiladas are always a messy, messy affair, with ripped tortillas and gooey filling and melty sauce and cheese. These were no exception, and were totally, totally rockin’. I don’t say “rockin'” very often, but I think it fits here.

Can I just say I was totally skeptical about the chocolate in the sauce? Yeah. I didn’t believe, but now I do. When I smelled the distinct, accurate scent of enchiladas wafting from the oven, I knew she was right. And the smoky tofu black bean filling! It required 2 tsp of smoke flavoring, which scared me. Two whole teaspoons? I think I put in maybe one and a half, and I should have gone the whole way. Or added a little smoked paprika, too, that would be an awesome touch.

This dinner was also made possible by Trader Joe’s, who now has two stores in the Kansas City area. Bless them. They have totally superior and cheap products, and I have driven out there not once this week–but three times. THREE TIMES. In a week. That’s like 6 hours of transit time for a little Trader Joe’s fix. But I missed them so much! When I lived in San Diego, they were just down the street. I took them for granted. No longer!

So, yeah, Trader Joe’s organic sprouted tofu is my new favorite tofu. It smells amazing raw, which I do not normally think about tofu. At all. And great corn tortillas, since making my own is sort of a pain in the butt. If I talk any more about them, I’ll want to drive out there again. Must…stop…reaching…for the keys…

Pasta de the place I sorta used to live near

Here’s Pasta de los Angeles, in all it’s mixed-up glory. It’s a recipe I make often from AfR, though it isn’t one of my favorites. But there’s a part of my brain that goes…mmm…hot salsa pasta? Yeah. Tomatoes, cilantro, garlic, black beans–it’s all there. But when I get done making it, I usually don’t want to eat it. Odd, right?

It’s a tasty dish, easy to make, and the spinach adds a looooot, despite the fact it seems like a strange addition. I also like to put in corn, since it gives a hint of sweetness that the original recipe is missing. And I put on lots of hot sauce. Usually Dan’s Texas Dew Drops. Of which I have a massive stash in my cupboard. I LOVE YOU, DAN!

 

Super Bowl Week!…the soba bowl

Today’s photo ain’t pretty, but it tasted really great!
So there she is, in all her green glory. Steamed broccoli & zucchini, tossed with soba noodles, black beans, and miso dressing. Also, I applied the first bite directly to my eye, so I spent the entirety of this meal crying. Nice!

Want to know something strange? The amount of green onion in the dressing actually makes it taste spicy. Want to know something else? I still put hot sauce on it. So good. Also, this would have been totally awesome with some peanuts or cashews thrown into it as well. I’m going to do that next time for sure. Also, I probably used about half the miso that the recipe calls for, since I was worried about the sodium. It made the dressing a little watery, so watch out if you do the same!

Recipe from Appetite for Reduction.