Thursday, January 28, 2010

Brace Yourself for Three Bean Vegetarian Chili in the Crockpot

I hardly notice the change, but then she looks up and smiles at me, and I see train tracks. Pink train tracks on a face that is changing. We had to watch that Brady Bunch episode when Marsha gets her braces. Twice. Marsha managed to get several dates to the school dance even with her braces on. Not that I want that for Sailor. But I'm just saying, I think if it's OK for Marsha, it's going to be OK for Sailor too. So far, only one person has called Sailor "BRACE FACE." And it was me. But I said it nicely, as in, "Aw, come here, my little brace face." Her brother, in a rare moment of compassion, said, "Sailor, I think you look even prettier with braces on. I wish I could get braces, too." But then, he felt embarassed by his heartfelt admission, and hid his face in a zorro mask for the rest of the afternoon. I wish I had a zorro mask that I could hide behind whenever I embarass myself. But then, I might not ever come out. I could save a lot of money on mascara.
But I digress. I wanted to make a big pot of comfort for my little Marsha Brady. The January copy of Cooking Light had a stunning display of chilis (not to mention some very tempting carrot cake pancakes), and I fully intend to make them all. I started with Three Bean Vegetarian Chili, and I made the whole durn thing in the crockpot. Fantastic, friends-truly fantastic. And maybe even ultra-fantastic the next day. You know what else is fantastic? All of your kind comments about Sailor's braces. You are just the kind of people that I love to count as my friends. You made Sailor feel like a million bucks, so that's how much I owe you. Have a great weekend, everybody.
Money Saving Tips:
Use dried beans of any variety, soaked over night in this recipe to save a few bucks. You might need more liquid, but you won't need to alter the cooktime. You can swap the butternut squash with canned pumpkin.
Three Bean Vegetarian Chili in the Crockpot
Slightly Adapted from January Cooking Light
Estimated Cost: $6.00 for six servings
2 bottled roasted red peppers, drained and chopped
1 large minced onion
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 tablespoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups organic vegetable broth
1 1/2 cups pureed butternut squash (I used frozen)
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained and chopped
1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained

Add all ingredients to the slow cooker. Cook on high for 3-4 hours, or on low for 6-8 hours. Garnish with sour cream and green onions before serving.
PS Don't forget to vote for my crazy kid in the Jif Peanut Butter Contest. Just follow the link over to cast your lot for West's More Rockin' Moroccan Peanuty Pitas.
Next Up: Carrot Cake Pancakes? Or one last Crockpot Soup?


Fantastic Mr. R said...

I wish I could look that good with braces on! She looks adorable and quite grown up, like the perfect age for baby sitting four little cousins this weekend :) just kidding. We all think she looks beautiful and now all my kids want to put a paperclip in their mouth and pretend they have them, too.
Love, The Say Say fan club

Michal said...

i love west's hiding place. and sailor's brace face. and i just might make this for dinner tonight.

Ali said...

One more crockpot soup please!

The JR said...

The veggie chili looks very good to me. My hubs wouldn't eat it though. He would fuss at the lack of meat.

Some things just won't change.

Catherine said...

I wish I had looked that cute when I had braces. And I hope, although I know it's impossible, that when I am lucky enough to have braces again as an adult, that I could look that cute. She looks adorable. She really does.

And the chili looks delish!

Seth and Julie said...

I never had braces and I definitely did the paper clip in the mouth thing. I was so jealous of the kids with braces...braces were so cool! Sailor looks just darling in those braces...she really does! And West hiding behind the zorro mask is pretty classic too. I am off to vote for your recipe now, Zorro.

Oh, and I would like 100 more crock pot soup recipes, and the carrot cake pancakes while you're at it. No pressure!

Julie Harward said...


Kerrie said...

Thanks for Sharing the chili. I love to do dried beans in the crockpot, but I was always uncertain what how much dried beans I should substitute in a recipe that calls for cans. Did some googling and just wanted to pass along what I found "According to the American Dry Bean Board, one 15-ounce can of beans equals one and one-half cups of cooked dry beans, drained."


Katie and Mark said...

LOVE Sailor's new look! The pink looks very cute. West hiding behind the Zorro mask is SO cute too. :)

Allison said...

Hooray! THANKS for all these vegetarian friendly/ adaptable crock-pot recipes! This is like the 3rd or 4th in the last couple of weeks! When I got married someone gave me a slow cooker cookbook, and although I am sure the recipes in it are all lovely, I have only tried the mac and cheese, since it is the only one I can find that doesn't call for a pork shoulder, or a whole roast. Thanks for Sharing! P.S. Sailor looks darling as usual!

Shelley said...

Sailor looks completely at ease in her new braces! And tell her from us that she is fortunate to be playing the violin because all of Lynn & Kevin's friends who have gotten braces not only had to get used to eating and brushing their teeth with them, but also how to play their instruments! I'm with Ali, one more crockpot soup!

Chef Aimee said...

The kids are just adorable!

As for this of the best aspects of winter is using the Crockpot often!

Leslie said...

Oh, she looks great.
She has shiny, new train tracks.
8 Years old and in braces!
Your children are going to do everything at a breakneck pace aren't they?
Well, just tell her not to chew on the ends of any pencils, especially the ones that have a missing eraser.
I somehow managed to get the end of a pencil that had a missing eraser stuck in one of my brackets, and had to go in for serious repairs.
Anyway, her teeth look great and so did Zorro.

Lori said...

I fear my daughter is headed for the braces as well. How old is she?

That was cute what you said about your son. I too wish I had a Zorro mask!

THis bean chili looks totally amazing!

Prudy said...

Welcome! Sailor is only eight and a half, but she has a crossbite that has to be repaired. She may have to have braces twice!!!

gigi said...

She looks adorable with her braces and I just love the pink! She is such a beautiful girl.

this recipe looks and sounds just like something I would love, love, love!! It is a must try really soon.

Aggie said...

Oh she's adorable! Loving the pink too!
I thought of you today when "If I knew you were coming" came on the radio...the kids and I sang it and then at the end my daughter goes "I Like that song mommy"...

I just looked at your last few soups and they all are so delicious. I've been using the crock pot a bit more lately. Hope you are doing well Prudy! :)

The Blonde Duck said...

This is right up my ally. Ben's trying to eat healthier, and he loves soups.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the Bean Chilli recipe. I've printed it out to try for myself. Did you enjoy it?

Jennifer I said...

I really enjoyed this soup. The rest of the family, not so much. I think if I lied and told my husband there was meat in it, it would have been received better. oh well, more for me!
And braces are so different these days -- she is such a cutie.

Prudy said...

OH, I hate it when that happens! My family loved it, even my husband, who usually shies away from meatless foods. I'm glad you liked it at least!

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Invisible braces said...

Aww don't worry about it! She looks very very cute with braces! She's one of the lucky ones haha I remember some people really looked bad when they had theirs put on.

Touchscreen said...

i love the smile of the kids.

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