South of the Border Veggie Chili with Fixins
- 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
- 2 1/2 cups diced yellow onions
- 1 poblano pepper, stemmed, seeded, and chopped
- 3/4 cup diced red bell pepper
- 1/2 cup diced yellow bell pepper
- 1 large or 2 small jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced
- 2 tablespoons minced cilantro stems
- 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon Emeril's Southwest Essence
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon crumbled Mexican oregano
- 2 teaspoons salt, divided
- 2 cans diced tomatoes, with juices
- 6 cups Emeril's All Natural Organic Vegetable Stock or other low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock
- 2 cups cooked kidney beans, drained
- 4 cups diced (1/2-inch) zucchini
- 4 cups diced (1/2-inch) yellow squash
- 1 tablespoon masa harina or yellow cornmeal
- 2 tablespoons freshly chopped cilantro leaves
- Sour cream, for serving
- Grated sharp Cheddar Cheese, for serving
- Chopped green onions, for serving
- Fried tortilla chips or strips, for serving
Preheat the oven to the broil setting.
In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and saute the onion, poblano, red and yellow bell peppers until soft and lightly caramelized, about 6 minutes. Add the jalapeno, cilantro stems, garlic, chili powder, Southwest Essence, cumin, oregano, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of the salt and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and vegetable stock, bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Add the beans and continue to cook at a simmer until the flavors come together, 30 to 40 minutes longer.
While the chili is simmering, toss the zucchini with 1 tablespoon from the remaining oil and 1/4 teaspoon of the remaining salt and place on a large baking sheet. Broil until caramelized around the edges, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the oven and repeat with the yellow squash, remaining tablespoon of oil and remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Set the zucchini and squash aside to cool while the chili is simmering.
Once the chili has simmered for about 40 minutes, add the zucchini, yellow squash, masa harina, and chopped cilantro and cook for 10 minutes longer. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
Serve the chili hot, with bowls of the sour cream, Cheddar, green onions and crispy tortilla chips or strips for guests to garnish their bowls, as desired.
Chef's Note: this chili is best made a day in advance.