Single Servings

Cooking for a single person

Sweet Potato and Red Bean Chili

Posted by zerfall on January 23, 2009

I cooked chili for the first time from scratch yesterday. Over the last month I’ve found I like to cook without using recipes unless it’s something that ratios or exact temperatures are really needed, so when I decided to make chili last night I did a bit of reading, I looked over several chili recipes I’ve found on the internet and noted a few things. The first was one recipe called for sweet potatoes, which I happened to have a couple I needed to use up. The next thing I noticed was that most of the recipes cooked the food in different orders. I though I probably can’t mess this up then as long as everything gets cooked, and with the long simmer time to reduce and thicken the chili I figured I was in the clear.

So I set out to make some chili, below is a rough recipe of what I used yes I used pasta sauce, but in my defense I thought I had some canned tomatoes in my pantry, and I did not. Throw in any sort of vegetables you have on hand that seem like they would fit, as well as any spices you really like. I am one of those people who can’t stand cilantro(coriander) so I don’t include it in anything I make for myself. But I think if you are the type that likes it it would be a great addition.

Sweet Potato and Red Bean Chili

1 bottle of beer
2 teaspoons of butter
500grams (about 1lb) Ground Beef
1/2 Spanish Onion diced
2 cloves of garlic
2 stocks of chopped celery
1.5 to 3 tablespoons of chilipowder
1 dried hot pepper (use your choice depending on how much spice you like)
equal parts dried oregano, cumin seed, paprika
1 red pepper
1 can red kidney beans
1 medium sized sweet potato
1 cup of corn
1/4-1/2 jar of pasta sauce(I used a mushroom, pepper sauce)
1 cup beef stock
Your favorite hot sause

In a large pot heat up the olive oil and then start to brown the onions, when they are just about ready add the garlic, celery, red pepper, chili powder and a pinch of salt to help draw some of the liquid out of the celery. Once the celery has started to become transparent, push the vegetables to the edge of the pot and add the ground beef. Letting it get in contact with the pan will help it to brown a little better.

Once the beef is cooked, add half of the beer to deglaze the pot. Throw in the sweet potatoes, beef stock, and pasta sauce now if everything is covered add a bit more water or stock. Bring to a boil then lower to a simmer and cook until the sweet potatoes are tender.

Drain and rinse the can of beans and add to the pot, along with the corn. Add the salt, pepper and hot sauce to taste. Simmer for at least an hour or until the chili has reduced and thickened.

Chili always tastes better if you give it the time to sit and if you make this the day before and just reheat what you need if you are having friends over it will be great. Also you can freeze unused portions for easy lunches later in the month. You can also add more flavour to your chili by topping it with cheese, sour cream, green onions, etc.


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