The evenings stretch out ahead these days from such an early hour. By the time I leave the office, it’s already dark, and those wonderfully mammalian curl-up-in-your-house-and-eat-and-stay-warm instincts kick in pretty quickly.This three-grain chili fits the bill nicely on these evenings (I’m calling it three grain even though lentils are not a grain, technically. Oh well.) Chuck stirred it while it was on the stove and exclaimed, “There’s so much in there!” And there is. I find that a meatless chili needs a good variety of textures to reach that not-quite-soup, not-quite-stew grey area that chili must straddle. Millet in soups is a recent discovery and is fantastic; but with all these liquid-sucking grains, beware that upon reheating, you might need to add a bit more liquid to reconstitute it. It’s also a great canvas for any mixture of your favorite beans; here, I threw some adzuki beans in with pinto.
Three-grain veggie chili
There is a decent amount of chopping involved in this recipe, but it makes an enormous pot of chili.
You will need
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium yellow onions, finely chopped
3 shallots, finely chopped
7 cloves garlic, minced
3 stalks celery, finely chopped
2 jalapeños, finely chopped
2 cups mushrooms (I used baby bella; crimini would also work well here), chopped
2 28-ounce cans of diced, no-salt tomatoes
9-10 cups liquid (water or vegetable broth)
3-4 cups beans, soaked overnight (I used pinto and adzuki)
3/4 cup millet
3/4 cup wheat bulgur
3/4 cup green lentils
2 tablespoons cumin
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
Salt to taste
Greek yogurt (optional)
Hot sauce (optional)
- Heat olive oil in your biggest pot. Add the onions, shallots, garlic, celery, and jalapeños, and sauté, stirring occasionally, until very aromatic and softening, 5 to 10 minutes. Add mushrooms and sauté several minutes more. Stir in tomatoes until well incorporated. Pour in water/broth, and bring to a boil. Add the beans, millet, bulgur, lentils, cumin, and paprika and stir. Reduce to a simmer. Simmer for at least an hour, stirring occasionally to get the grains off of the bottom of the pot, until beans and grains are tender and chili has thickened. Taste for salt, and season if necessary. Top with a generous dollop of greek yogurt drizzled with hot sauce.