Monday, February 7, 2011

Cocoa-Coconut Chili

I've been trying to update my blog everyday to get through the backlog of food I have to blog about, but I should realize that I won't really have time to update on weekends. I need to save the posts and space them out so as not to overwhelm people during the week! So my trip to Trader Joe's was a success of course. I wish I could say I came home with a virtuous bunch of food but I wasn't comfortable bringing back refrigerated or frozen stuff, since I didn't know how long it would take to cross the border. And they have so many different fun treats so I had to try some!

Mostly I bought junkfood and trail mix (which I guess the kinds I bought are kind of junkfood). I'm really looking forward to trying the garlic basil pasta and lemon pepper papparadelle! The box mac & cheese is for E as he loves trying different ones. The Blenheim California apricots are not good. I'm sticking with the Turkish ones from now on. I don't love dried apricots (or fruit) to begin with but want to start eating them more often for a small source of iron.

Onto the recipe! I've mentioned before that Eat, Drink & Be Vegan is one of my new favourite cookbooks right? It's an outstanding cookbook. I have so many new favourite dishes from it. One of them is this cocoa-coconut chili. I was super intrigued by it - cocoa + coconut in a chili?? Sounded weird but also so interesting. And it turned out really delicious. I'm not a big chili fan but really loved this.

If this sounds good, you might also like:
Curried Split Pea Soup
Thai Coconut Corn Stew
White Bean & Roasted Garlic Soup
Hungarian Mushroom Soup

Cocoa-Coconut Chili
Adapted from Eat, Drink & Be Vegan

Makes 7-8 servings

1 tsp oil
2 cups onion, diced
1 1/2 cups celery, diced (I used about 8 ribs)
1/2 cup red or yellow bell peppers, diced
6 medium cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp sea salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 tbsp mild chili powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp allspice
3 tbsp Dutch-processed cocoa powder
2 cans (796 mL) diced tomatoes
1 can (398 mL) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (398 mL) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (398 mL) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (398 mL) light coconut milk
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1 cup frozen corn kernels

In a large pot on medium heat, add oil, onion, celery, bell pepper, garlic, salt, pepper, chili powder, cinnamon, and allspice and stir to combine. Cover and cook for 7-9 minutes, stirring occasionally; reduce heat if onions or garlic starts to burn. When onions start to soften, add cocoa and stir for 1-2 minutes, then add tomatoes, beans, coconut milk, and coconut, and stir to combine. Increase heat to bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in corn kernels, and cook another 5 minutes to heat through. Remove cover to let liquid reduce if desired.


Joanne said...

Whoa this makes a SERIOUS amount of chili! I love the idea of a cocoa-coconut combo...such an intriguing flavor combo but one that I will definitely be trying!

Johanna GGG said...

it sounds more like a cookie than a stew but sounds worth a try as I love trying a new chili recipe

Meaghan Luby said...

wow! what an interesting twist on chili! i just made myself some chili but, now i want to make this batch! that sounds delicious :-D
thanks for sharing!!

LauraJayne said...

I know I've said it before - but I am so jealous that you have a Trader Joe's close! They have totally amazing options that are nowhere to be found in Utah!

kickpleat said...

i always add cocoa to my chili but never coconut! Sounds totally delicious. Yum.

janet said...

I am heading to NYC next week and hope to check out Trader Joe's as well!

I love different variations of chili... I have heard of cocoa in chili, but not coconut.. sounds great! Thanks for sharing. :)

briarrose said...

I am intrigued...I've never seen a chili with this flavor mix before. I'll have to try this out.

Anonymous said...

I'm so intrigued by this flavor combination I'm going to have to try it out to see for myself!

Anonymous said...

That trader joes trail mix with the banana chips barely lasted two days in our house. watch out!

grace said...

i have NEVER seen coconut in a chili recipe--how awesome!

Xiaolu said...

Yes, please keep posting about this book and maybe one day I'll actually use it (yea I suck at using the books I own). But seriously, this looks amazing. I've actually added cocoa to a different chili I made before and really liked the depth of flavor that resulted.

Quirky Jessi said...

I like the idea of adding cocoa powder and I can imagine the taste combined with the cinnamon and chili powder...yum. I'm not a fan of coconut, though, so I'm wondering if it'd affect the taste much to leave it out (or if it'd just change the texture slightly). Hmm.

Anonymous said...

That chili sounds awesome!!!

Lisa said...

Such a healthy and flavourful dish. I wish I was having this for dinner.

Haley said...

Made it and loved it. I'd tell others that neither the cocoa or coconut flavor is overwhelming and manages to compliment the spiciness of the chili well. It gives a "suggestion" of sweetness without any added sweetners.

I'm doing a vegan and sugar-free month, so this was a great way to incorporate some of my favorite forbidden flavors with a delicious vegan dish. I happily ate this dinner, lunch, dinner all in a row.

Any other good vegan/sugar-free recipes you want to post this month would be LOVED!

janet said...

Hey Ashley, So I made it to Trader Joe's this weekend in NYC and I am convinced there is different stock between the East and West coast! I didn't see most of the item you bought... I ended up stocking up on the quick-cook steel cut oats, loved their dried wild blueberries but since they were pricey only got one package. The lite coconut milk was reasonably priced, though, so I picked up some of that. The edamame was a nice consumable, though. I had really hoped to find their marinaded artichokes in the fridge section (had heard great things) but they were nowhere to be found.

For dried apricots, I recently made this dish that you might like. I really like the sweet/savoury combo of Moroccan cuisine and this did not disappoint:

eatme_delicious said...

Aw that's disappointing that the stock is so different. The Trader Joe's that I go to is actually quite small so I'm surprised! Sounds like you got some yummy stuff. :) I found a lot of their stuff cheaper (ie. the orzo was 99 cents versus at least $4 here). And thanks so much for the link to the recipe. It looks amazing and is another Ottolenghi recipe to add to my list!

janet said...

Hey Ashley, Yeah, it is weird, for sure. I will have to check it out when I finally make it to the west coast. :)

This is another SUPER salad with dried apricots. If it doesn't convert you to love dried apricots, I think you are a lost cause, hehe. :)

TheGourmetCoffeeGuy said...

Great post. Love the use of coconut and cocoa to enhance the food flavors. Definitely will try it. Thank you for sharing.