I don’t know about you, but January gives me a serious case of the blahs. The excitement and business of the holidays have passed, leaving me with the sad realization that summer is still six months away (more like eight in Seattle’s case) and I am freaking cold.
The last few days Seattle has also decided to copy San Francisco and cover our city with an even more depressing blanket of frigid fog, so thank you for that. Alas, what does one do to lift spirits? I mean isn’t it obvious?!
Yes, comfort food is THE answer. And in my opinion there is no better way to satisfy stomach and soul then with a piping hot bowl of spicy, hearty, chili.
The term “comfort food” is often associated with heart-burn inducing dishes like mac n’ cheese, fried chicken and tuna noodle casserole , and anything but synonymous with healthy. But a dish like chili originally incorporates veggies (onions, tomatoes, peppers), fibrous and protein packed beans, and metabolism- boosting spices like cumin, chili powder, ginger and cayenne. You can easily swap out the meat for other ingredients like squash without having to sacrifice the flavor.
I would definitely recommend NOT using a slow cooker and going with the stove top method. I’ve tried both ways and even on high the crock pot wasn’t getting hot enough to cook the butternut squash.
This sweet and spicy chili would be delish with some gluten-free cornbread however I chose to pair mine with the most amazing vegan caesar salad I’ve ever had. Keep an eye out for the recipe in future posts (yes this is a ploy to get you to follow me and read more of my blog). I topped mine with cilantro and avocado but feel free to get crazy!
Save this recipe for a seriously cold winter day when you need a pick me up and only comfort food will suffice (but you’re still trying to make good on your new year’s resolutions and dreaming of that bikini you want to buy come sweet summa time).