Meaty Black Bean Chili

Meaty Black Bean Chili

Meaty Black Bean Chili

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Meaty Black Bean Chili served in a shallow bowl with flatbread, garnished with cheddar cheese, green onions and cilantro.

Meaty Black Bean Chili is my new favourite chili! For good reason too, it’s hearty and spicy with a punch of freshness from fresh cilantro added at the end. It also uses black beans, which is my favourite bean and they’re a great change from kidney beans. I also like the use of beef and pork for a meaty and hearty chili that is very satisfying. This chili is excellent for potlucks and back yard BBQ parties.

Meaty Black Bean Chili in a cream coloured dutch oven resting on a navy kitchen towel and wooden trivet.

Spicy heat is a personal choice for everyone and everyone gets an opinion on how hot their food should be. I don’t care for anything too spicy, and by that I mean, if I can’t taste the other ingredients because my lips are burning so bad, well, that ’s too hot for me. I find the spiciness in this Meaty Black Bean Chilli just right for my liking. It has a subtle spiciness that’s just enough to make me want to eat another bite with fresh cilantro and cheese to mellow the heat. But of course, this is just my opinion, so feel free to add more cayenne or chipotle peppers in adobo sauce if that suits your taste.

Another great thing about chili is it’s even better if served the next day as the flavours and spiciness have more time meld. It freezes very well and can be kept in a sealed container in the freezer for 1-2 months. Enjoy!

Meaty Black Bean Chili
Print Recipe
    Servings Prep Time
    9 cups 30 minutes
    Cook Time
    60 minutes
    Servings Prep Time
    9 cups 30 minutes
    Cook Time
    60 minutes
    Meaty Black Bean Chili
    Print Recipe
      Servings Prep Time
      9 cups 30 minutes
      Cook Time
      60 minutes
      Servings Prep Time
      9 cups 30 minutes
      Cook Time
      60 minutes
      Ingredients
      Servings: cups
      Instructions
      1. Heat oil in a large pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add ground beef and pork and cook until no longer pink and starting to brown, breaking up any large pieces. Stir in minced garlic and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring often.
      2. Scrape out seeds from the chipotle peppers and finely mince, use about two chili peppers with sauce to equal 2 tbsp or more depending how hot you want it. Add peppers to the pot along with beef broth, tomato sauce, canned tomatoes, green pepper, onion, spices, salt, and sugar. Stir well to combine.
      3. Reduce heat to a gentle simmer, cover and cook for about 50 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove lid and adjust consistency to your liking by adding more beef broth or simmering uncovered for a few minutes to evaporate some liquid. The chili will thicken slightly as it sits and cools.
      4. Stir in black beans and cook for 1-2 minutes to warm. Stir in cilantro just before serving and ladle into serving bowls. Garnish with cheddar cheese, green onion and additional cilantro.
      Recipe Notes

      -I found 1 cup of beef broth just about right for consistency.  Adjust to your liking.

      -This chili is even better when served the next day as the flavours have longer to meld.

      -Makes about 9 cups of chili and freezes very well.

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      I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
      Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin

      Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin

      Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin

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      Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin baked in small red ceramic cocotte dishes.

      I absolutely love hot, cheesy spinach and artichoke dip. It’s something I can dig into and truly be a little pig about. So today’s post is a riff on one of my favourite dips made into gnocchi casserole form. This will likely be my last warming and hearty casserole of the season because it’s time to think spring…and I’m definitely okay with that. But in the same breath, I didn’t want you to miss out on this wonderfully cheesy and saucy Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin.

      If you’re not familiar with gnocchi, they are essentially little dumplings often made with mashed potatoes or ricotta cheese. Very simple to make, they cook in minutes and they can take on whatever sauce you want to toss them in. A classic sauce is a butter and sage sauce, but your favourite family meat sauce would be great too. The cheese lover in me can’t help but smother the tender little dumplings in a luscious Gruyere cheese sauce. Enjoy!

      Ricotta gnocchi dusted lightly with flour on a tan cutting board in preparation for Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin.

      Tips for great gnocchi:

      Don’t overwork the dough and mix only until combined. This will prevent too much gluten development in the flour.

      The grooves are not necessary, however, they help the dumpling hold the sauce. It only takes a few extra minutes to roll each piece over the tines of a fork or gnocchi board.

      Cook gnocchi in gently simmering water and only cook until they start to float to the surface. A rapid boil is a little too rough for the tender gnocchi.

      Gnocchi can be made and cooked ahead of time. Simply chill or freeze in a single layer on a large baking tray. Once they are frozen they can be stored together in a sealable bag or airtight container. If chilling, cover and use within 2 days.

      Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin baked in small red ceramic cocotte dishes.

      Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin baked in small red ceramic cocotte dishes.
      Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin
      Print Recipe
        Servings Prep Time
        4 people 75 minutes
        Cook Time Passive Time
        27-33 minutes 5 minutes
        Servings Prep Time
        4 people 75 minutes
        Cook Time Passive Time
        27-33 minutes 5 minutes
        Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin baked in small red ceramic cocotte dishes.
        Spinach and Artichoke Gnocchi Gratin
        Print Recipe
          Servings Prep Time
          4 people 75 minutes
          Cook Time Passive Time
          27-33 minutes 5 minutes
          Servings Prep Time
          4 people 75 minutes
          Cook Time Passive Time
          27-33 minutes 5 minutes
          Ingredients
          Gnocchi
          Servings: people
          Instructions
          Gnocchi
          1. In a large bowl whisk together eggs, ricotta, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Stir in flour until dough starts to come together.
          2. Scoop dough onto a floured work surface and knead gently for a few turns until dough is smooth. Shape into a round disk, cover and allow to rest for 10 minutes for the flour to hydrate.
          3. Cut dough disk into 4 equal portions and roll eat portion into an approximate 15" log. Cut each log into 3/4" pieces, dusting lightly with flour as you go to prevent sticking.
          4. Roll each piece across the tines of a fork or gnocchi board, sprinkle with flour as you go to prevent sticking. Dust a large baking tray with flour and lay formed gnocchi in a single layer on the tray. Sprinkle with flour, cover and keep chilled until ready to use.
          Sauce
          1. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour until combined. Slowly add 1 cup of hot milk and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Repeat with remaining milk, adding it gradually and stirring until smooth after each addition. Once all the milk has been added, bring to a gentle simmer to ensure flour has thickened to its capacity. Continue to cook for 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
          2. While the sauce is simmering, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a simmer and preheat oven to 350°F.
          3. Remove the sauce from heat and stir in half of the Gruyere cheese, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Once the cheese has melted stir in spinach and chopped artichokes.
          4. Gently add gnocchi to the simmering water. Cook until all the gnocchi float to the surface which will only take a few minutes. Remove with a slotted scoop to a towel-lined tray to remove excess moisture. Immediately add gnocchi to the sauce and stir gently to combine.
          5. Divide between 4 oven-safe individual cocotte dishes or ramekins that will hold a minimum of 1 1/2 cups. Divide remaining Gruyere cheese evenly over tops and place on a foil-lined baking tray. Bake for 25-30 minutes until bubbly. Turn oven to broil to lightly brown the tops for about 2 minutes.
          6. Remove from oven and allow to rest for a few minutes before serving as they are very hot.
          Recipe Notes

          A single casserole dish can be used instead of individual cocotte dishes if desired.

          It's important to add the cooked gnocchi immediately to the sauce as they will start to stick together if left to sit for too long.

           

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          I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
          Slow Cooker Lentil and Ham Soup

          Slow Cooker Lentil and Ham Soup

          A day for family…

          February 18, 2019 marks Family Day in my province of Alberta, Canada.  A holiday to promote family values and spending time together as a family.  Slow Cooker Lentil and Ham Soup is perfect for your family day weekend.  Super easy to toss together in your slow cooker, and forget about until dinner time. Giving you the whole day to spend with your family without having to worry about dinner until the last few touches are required, which is hours later.

          Dinner is ready…

          With just a couple of last minute touches to the soup, the whole family can enjoy a hearty and satisfying soup made from scratch.  It’s a wonderful bowlful to warm everyone up from a day of outdoor activities even if it’s not a holiday.  The recipe makes about 10 cups and freezes well too.

          To ham or not to ham…

          I love the subtle smokiness a ham bone can bring to soup and I just happen to have a ham bone leftover from the holidays. If a ham bone isn’t available to you, a smoked pork hock works just as well and they’re readily available all year.   I also like the texture and flavour of meaty little bites of ham throughout the soup too, so I’ll definitely ham it up when I can. But don’t fret, this is a lovely vegan soup without the ham if that is your preference.  The dill and vinegar in the recipe add a little brightness to the soup and helps to cut the starchiness of the lentils.  It’s so, so good.

          Now, about the lentil…

          I could rattle on and on about the lentil, but the lentils website is very informative about the varieties, nutrition and cooking of the lentil.  It’s a good read with lots of information.  

          Slow Cooker Lentil and Ham Soup
          Print Recipe
            Servings Prep Time
            10 cups 30 minutes
            Cook Time
            7 hours
            Servings Prep Time
            10 cups 30 minutes
            Cook Time
            7 hours
            Slow Cooker Lentil and Ham Soup
            Print Recipe
              Servings Prep Time
              10 cups 30 minutes
              Cook Time
              7 hours
              Servings Prep Time
              10 cups 30 minutes
              Cook Time
              7 hours
              Ingredients
              Servings: cups
              Instructions
              1. Rinse and drain lentils. Add lentils along with onion, celery, carrots, cabbage, garlic, parsley, bay leaf, thyme to your slow cooker.
              2. Cut excess ham away from bone and save for later.
              3. Add ham bone and 7 cups of broth to slow cooker. Stir to combine, cover and cook on low for about 7 hours, stirring once or twice.
              4. While soup is cooking, coursely chop or shred ham. Cover and refrigerate until soup is ready.
              5. Remove ham bone and bay leaf from soup. Adjust consistency with the additional cup of broth. Stir in chopped ham and white vinegar. Cover and allow to cook for 5-10 more minutes to warm ham. Add a generous sprinkle of fresh dill and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with a dollop of sour cream and more fresh dill.
              Recipe Notes
              • a smoked pork hock will work in place of a meaty ham bone.
              • for a vegetarian/vegan option, use vegetable broth and omit the ham and sour cream.

              Affiliate Disclosure

              I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
              Rustic Potato and Sausage Soup

              Rustic Potato and Sausage Soup

              The new year is upon us…

              Many of us are thinking of eating healthier, and I’m a firm believer that eating well and eating foods you enjoy should go hand in hand. Rustic Potato and Sausage Soup is guilt-free comfort food that’s loaded with kale and vegetables.  It’s a homey soup that’s warming and hearty with a rich tomato laced chicken broth, tender baby potatoes, Italian sausage and vegetables. Paprika, garlic, and fresh herbs give added depth of flavour to this rustic, chunky soup. 

              Healthy potatoes, rich in potassium and vitamin C add fibre with their skins and a rustic earthiness.  Tender kale, also rich in nutrients, gently clings to all it surrounds for a wonderful spoonful.  It’s the best of both worlds, being hearty and comforting while still being healthy, satisfying, and full of flavour.  So even if eating better is not on your resolution list this year, you’ll still want a big bowl of this satisfying soup.  Enjoy!

              Author:  Compelled to Cook

              Rustic Potato and Sausage Soup
              Print Recipe
              Servings Prep Time
              8 cups 20 minutes
              Cook Time
              35-40 minutes
              Servings Prep Time
              8 cups 20 minutes
              Cook Time
              35-40 minutes
              Rustic Potato and Sausage Soup
              Print Recipe
              Servings Prep Time
              8 cups 20 minutes
              Cook Time
              35-40 minutes
              Servings Prep Time
              8 cups 20 minutes
              Cook Time
              35-40 minutes
              Ingredients
              Servings: cups
              Instructions
              1. Over medium heat add 1 tbsp of olive to a large pot or dutch oven. Add sausage links and cook until golden and no longer pink, turning often about 15 minutes.
              2. Remove cooked sausage to a paper towel-lined dish to absorb any excess fat. To the same pot add remaining 1 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, celery, carrots and garlic, sauté for 4-5 minutes until starting to soften and have sweat off some of their moisture.
              3. Pour in chicken broth and tomatoes crushed with your hands. Add potatoes, bay leaf, oregano, parsley, and both paprikas. Cover and simmer on low for about 10 minutes until potatoes are almost tender. While soup is cooking, chop kale and cooked sausage into bite-size pieces.
              4. Add kale and sausage to the pot and continue to cook partially covered for about 5 minutes until kale is cooked but still has some colour and bite. Season with salt and pepper and serve immediately with crusty bread if desired.

              Affiliate Disclosure

              I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
              Hearty Hamburger Soup

              Hearty Hamburger Soup

              Hearty Hamburger Soup is loaded with barley, veggies and ground beef. A great soup with tons of flavour and almost stew like. It’s a soup you’ll be making again and again. A super simple recipe that makes a huge pot, and like most simmered things, it actually tastes better the next day after the flavours really meld together.

              While there’s plenty of hamburger soup recipes out there, this one comes from my little collection of Best of Bridge cookbooks. They’re old and dated but contain some great everyday recipes that are simple and easy to make. Plus they have cute little quotes at the bottom of each recipe, invoking a smile every time I flip through them.

              Although I am not a huge fan of using canned soup to make soup, I can’t help but love the rich flavour the consommé brings to this hearty pot of goodness. It’s a delicious soup and a wonderful meal served with crusty bread. Enjoy!

              Recipe for Hearty Hamburger Soup adapted from The Best of Bridge

               

              Hearty Hamburger Soup
              Print Recipe
                Servings Prep Time
                10 people 15 minutes
                Cook Time
                2 1/4 hours
                Servings Prep Time
                10 people 15 minutes
                Cook Time
                2 1/4 hours
                Hearty Hamburger Soup
                Print Recipe
                  Servings Prep Time
                  10 people 15 minutes
                  Cook Time
                  2 1/4 hours
                  Servings Prep Time
                  10 people 15 minutes
                  Cook Time
                  2 1/4 hours
                  Ingredients
                  Servings: people
                  Instructions
                  1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Add ground beef and cook, breaking apart until starting to brown. Drain any visible fat. Add garlic and onion and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes.
                  2. Add remaining ingredients to pot and bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer on low for at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
                  Recipe Notes

                  I used Campbells brand soups in this recipe.  Makes about 4 litres of soup and freezes very well.