Pumpkin Chili

There’s a new show on Food TV or Cooking Channel (I don’t know which) called the Spice Goddess. I haven’t seen it, but I guess the point is that she shows you how to maximize the great spices in your closet to new and wonderful effects.

She is my cooking opposite. If I were ever to have a show on the Cooking Channel, it would have to be called “Just Add a Little Salt,” or maybe “Bland Living.”

Part of this is the kids, right? I can barely get my daughter to eat squash when mixed with butter and salt, and I’m confident that adding chili powder would make the task even more impossible. And since I don’t want to make two separate meals every night, I try to keep the flavors as simple and clean as possible while still tasting good. I say this by way of explaining how I came to make a chili with no chili powder in it.

In my defense, I did add four red hot actual chilies, then cooked them forever to mellow the heat, so it’s not as if there is no flavor there. It just doesn’t have the crisp hotness that you get from the powder.  If you are cooking for adults or older children, I’d absolutely recommend adding about 1-2 Tbs of chili powder to the mix. For the rest of us, this is quite fine as is.

You’d think I would have conditioned myself to always take pictures,but apparently I can still forget to do it.

Pumpkin Chicken Chili

(serves 4)

  • 1 heaping C pumpkin, cooked and pureed
  • 1 bottle cheap beer
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 red chilis, seeded and cut fine
  • 1 or two cloves garlic
  • 1 package uncooked sweet Italian Chicken Sausage (about 5 links)
  • 1 14 oz can Cannellini
  • a little cream
  • sour cream for serving

Remove sausage from casings and brown in a large pan. Remove and set aside. Add onions with a little EVOO, and cook until soft and sweet. Add in garlic and cook one minute more. I pressed mine, but chopped fine would be nice too. Remove and add to sausage. Deglaze pan with beer. At this point, you can either add sausage and onions back to the pan along with the cannellini and peppers and pumpkin and cook over low for one hour, or do the same in a crock pot and cook over low for 3 hours. Mix in a little cream at the end, if desired, maybe 1/4 Cup. Serve with sour cream.


About christianathomas

I'm a working mother of two trying to make eating well fit into our hectic lives. I also used to own a completely chaotic bakery. Follow me for tips and tricks on how to get more whole foods into your diet.
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