There are several benefits to this recipe:
- it's easy,
- most of the ingredients can be kept in the pantry,
- it freezes well,
- it's cheap to make a LOT of it,
- it can be made ahead of time in the crock pot,
- it's versatile - don't have a can of chili peppers? No trouble, leave them out. Want to throw in some corn? Go for it! Add a can of diced tomatoes and reduce the liquid for a thicker chili. Kids eating too? Reduce the cayenne pepper some.
- it can be left in the crock pot all day for teenage boys and their friends to grab as a healthy, filling "snack" while they're on the go!
- it can be made in one pot, meaning less work for Mom!
1 lb. dried red beans, soaked in vinegar-water the night before (for the slow-cooker, lots o' boys in the house method)
or 3 cans cooked (for the "nearly instant", smaller family version, half everything else)
4 boullion cubes
1 can diced green chili peppers
2 onions, diced
3 cloves garlic, diced
1 large or 2 small green bell peppers, diced
2 Tbsp. chili powder
2 bay leaves
cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes to taste
Boatload of ground Cumin (just kidding - not quite a "boatload" but I am a huge fan of cumin so put in as much as you like - or less if you don't care for it so much)
salt and pepper to taste
Slow Cooker Method (feeds 8 - 10 people)
1. Sautee the onions, garlic and green pepper in a bit of butter or olive oil until the onions are translucent.
2. Put all of the ingredients into a crock pot. Add 7 cups of water or broth.
3. Turn on the cooker to low heat (if cooking beans from scratch for more than 4 hours) or high heat (if you need it done in less than 4 hours, but you're still using dried beans), cover and let it cook until the beans are cooked through.
4. Serve hot with corn muffins, rice, and a dollop of sour cream or cheese if you like.
Nearly Instant Method (feeds 4 - 6 people)
1. Sautee 1 onion, 2 cloves of garlic and green pepper in a bit of butter or olive oil until the onions are translucent.
2. Rinse beans.
2. Put all of the ingredients into a medium-large soup pot, add 4 cups of water or broth and bring to a boil. Lower heat and cook until the beans are warmed through.
3. Serve hot with corn muffins, rice and a dollop or sour cream or cheese if you like.
Allowing this soup to sit until the next day enhances the flavors and makes for a very robust winter soup. If you decide to try it out, please head back to leave a comment and share your opinion!