Recipe courtesy of Taylor Cook and James Seppi

Black Bean, Lentil and Eggplant Chili

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 2 hr 30 min
  • Prep: 15 min
  • Cook: 2 hr 15 min
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings
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1/2 pound dried black beans, picked through

4 dried pasilla chiles or New Mexico chile peppers, stemmed (remove seeds for less heat)

3 bay leaves

4 large cloves garlic, diced

3 dried cascabel or guajillo chile peppers, stemmed (remove seeds for less heat)

2 dried chipotle chile peppers, stemmed (remove seeds for less heat)

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 onion, diced

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 poblano chile pepper, diced

1 small eggplant (1 pound), cut into 1/4-inch cubes

Kosher salt

1/2 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes

1/2 15-ounce can diced tomatoes

1 tablespoon vegetable bouillon

1/2 cup dried green lentils

Juice of 2 Key limes (or the juice of 1 lime)


  1. Put the black beans in a large bowl and cover with cold water; set aside to soak overnight, then drain.
  2. Combine the soaked black beans, 2 pasilla chiles, the bay leaves and half of the garlic in a large wide pot and add enough water to cover by 3 inches. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until soft, about 1 1/2 hours; remove from the heat and set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, add the remaining 2 pasilla chiles and the cascabel and chipotle chiles to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
  4. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, the chopped dried chiles and the cumin and saute until the chiles are soft, about 7 minutes. Add the remaining garlic and the poblano and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 more minutes. Add the eggplant, season with salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 8 minutes.
  5. Add the crushed and diced tomatoes, 4 cups water, the bouillon and green lentils to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are almost tender, about 30 minutes.
  6. Add the prepared black beans and their cooking liquid and simmer until the lentils are soft, about 30 more minutes. (The longer you let the chili simmer, the thicker it will get.) Season with salt and add the lime juice. Remove the whole pasilla chiles and bay leaves before serving.