Butternut Squash and Black Bean Chili

Yield: 10 servings

8 cups (½-inch cubes) fresh butternut squash flesh

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced

1 chipotle pepper, diced

6 plum tomatoes, chopped, juices reserved

3 tablespoons tomato paste

1 cup chicken broth, preferably homemade

4 tablespoons ancho chili powder

2 tablespoons ground cumin

2 tablespoons coarse salt

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

2 teaspoons epazote

1 ounce bittersweet chocolate

4 (15-ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained

1 ounce crumbled goat cheese or ½ cup sour cream for garnish

Prepare butternut squash cubes and set aside.

Heat olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, jalapeño pepper, and chipotle pepper. Sauté until softened, about 10 minutes. Add butternut squash cubes, tomatoes with their juices, tomato paste, chicken broth, chili powder, cumin, salt, vinegar, and epazote. Bring to low boil. Lower heat, cover, and simmer until squash is tender, about 20 minutes.

Add chocolate and black beans and stir until chocolate is melted and combined well. Add water, if necessary. Cover and simmer for about 30 minutes.

Garnish each serving with goat cheese or dollop of sour cream.


From Herbal Cookery: From the Kitchens and Gardens of the St. Louis Herb Society © St. Louis Herb Society 2009, p. 45

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