Thursday, November 1, 2012

Autumn Flavor Chili

Do you have Halloween food traditions? It seems a lot of people have either soup, chili, donuts or apple cider. I remember my family having soup or chili very often on Halloween night since it was a busy night for a crazy household of nine plus all the trick-or-treaters at the door. People could come in and grab a bowl before they went to get dressed up, went to a party, etc.
   It wasn't too busy of a night for me this year. My husband was at class so I was home alone and I got only about 20 trick-or-treaters.  I made chili anyway as a remembrance of my childhood days. I added an adult spin and autumn flair with the extra spices and flavors.  They gives the chili a fun, rich tasting base. Thanks to my friends at for the great idea. I really wish I had gotten an orange sweet potato (yam) instead of the white one to get that great halloween color incorporated, but oh well.

1 TBSP olive oil
1/2 small onion, chopped
1/2 small jalepeno, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 bell pepper, chopped
1 sweet potato, peeled and diced
2 (14 oz) cans black beans
2 cups broth
1 can crushed tomatoes
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 package ground chicken
6 large cremini or shitaake mushrooms, chopped
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp cocoa powder
1/4 tsp cinnamon
salt and pepper

Heat onion, jalepeno, garlic and bell pepper in pot with 1/2 TBSP of oil for several minutes until soft. Add in sweet potato, beans, broth, tomatoes and pumpkin. Cook chicken and mushrooms in the other 1/2 TBSP oil. Add in oregano, cumin, salt, pepper, smoked paprika and chili powder to the meat and mix together in a skillet until browned and cooked through, then add to chili pot. Add cinnamon and cocoa powder. Simmer for about 45 minutes until sweet potatoes are nice and soft. Serve with cilantro and avocado garnish.

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