"For each of us there is some mission in life if we but find it. All have some definite thing to do, something for which they have been created; and only the doing of this thing will justify their existence here on earth. If we come into the world and occupy space and time without giving back for this privilege, we have not justified ourselves, and our lives in the end are barren." ~ Hay

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Vegetarian Black Bean Chili & Corn Bread

Vegetarian Black Bean Chili, Corn Bread and Tossed Salad

I’m not going to lie.  I am tired!!  I didn’t realize that having teenagers was harder than having toddlers.   I haven’t slept since May!  At least when they are babies and cry during the night, you know where they are.  This “out driving late every night” is a killer.   In addition, my new dog Abbey hasn’t figured out that I don’t rise before 7:00 a.m.  I’m not complaining.  I’m just stating the facts.  After packing two kids and shuffling them off to college, I can finally catch up on some much needed “me” time. 
My daughter's "coach"
Today, I am sharing with you a recent dinner I made.   This dish is perfect this time of the year.  It makes use of farm-stand fresh vegetables.  Also, since autumn is around the horizon, this dish is a bit hardier than standard summer fare.  As I was passing through the Catskills after dropping my son off at college, I came upon a wonderful farm stand.  I picked up all that was needed for the Crockpot Vegetarian Black Bean Chili recipe below.  I was also lucky enough to stop at a little stand where a woman was selling her homegrown garlic.….LUCKY ME!!  ENJOY!!

Showing off my garlic
Crockpot Vegetarian Black Bean Chili
2 medium onions, chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tbsps. (or to taste) chili powder
2 tsps. Ground cumin
1 cup vegetable broth (can use water)
¼ cup organic red wine
3 large ripe heirloom tomatoes, chopped
1 tsp. honey
1 bay leaf
2 medium to large zucchini, chopped
2 ½ cups cooked black beans (*I soak overnight and cook the next morning)
1 ear fresh corn
Sea salt and pepper, to taste

Place onion, garlic, black beans, all vegetables, seasoning & liquids into the crockpot.  Stir gently to combine.  Cook on low setting for 8-10 hours.  Serve with cornbread and tossed salad.
Taking a break from cooking to play with Abbey

Teasing Abbey with some fresh oregano

Corn Bread
1 cup cornmeal
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tablespoon aluminum free baking powder
¼ cup honey
1 cup organic milk
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 egg

Combine dry ingredients.  Add milk, honey, oil and egg.  Mix until well blended.  No not over mix.  Pour into oiled Pyrex glass baking dish (7 x 9) and bake 15-20 minutes in a 425 degree preheated oven.  Make sure wooden pick comes out clean.


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Some of the ingredients

"Chop" is my middle name

In the crock it goes......

Corn bread fresh out of the oven

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