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Vegan crockpot chili

Posted Sep 07 2008 8:40pm

As Orthodox Christians, my husband and I have to readjust our diet several times a year to accomdate the rather severe fasting restrictions that we have to follow during Lent, the pre-Christmas fast, and just about every Wednesday and Friday. Technically, Orthodox fasting rules prohibit all animal products (meat, eggs, dairy; I think honey is an exception) and oil, but it’s really about eating more simply and refocusing on food as something needed for sustenance rather than an idol to be turned to for comfort, celebration, or any other reason.

But, of course, seven weeks of Lent is a long time to go without anything at all tasty, and we don’t want to devote all our time to cooking or meal-planning, so we came up with a few rather simple recipes that we dish out during that time. One of our favorites is vegan crockpot chili. It is spicy and filling, so that you barely realize that you’re missing anything. It’s nourishing and hot and nutritious. And, importantly, it’s quick and easy to prepare and easily modified to ingredients available to you - a must for an absent-minded cook like me.



-2 14oz cans of diced tomatoes

-1 8oz can tomato sauce

-most of a 12oz jar of salsa (Chichi’s hot is what we use)

-1 lb any beans you have on hand, canned or dry

-4 small raw potatoes, peeled, diced

-1 cup water

-4 cloves garlic, minced

-a pinch of garlic salt

-pinch cumin

-pinch cayenne pepper

-pinch black pepper

-pinch cinnamon

-pinch crushed chilis

Peel and dice potatoes. Throw all ingredients into crockpot and cook on low for 12 hrs.

You can use more or less potatoes and beans. You can add frozen or canned corn or peas or greenbeans or broccoli or whatever else you like. You can use tomato or V8 juice instead of water. You can use fresh tomatoes (especially if using V8). Don’t like that much garlic? Add less. Don’t like it spicy? Use mild salsa. Throw everything into the crockpot in the morning, and you’ve got a tasty meal at night, especially if paired with fresh-baked bread.

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