Oh yes, I’m “cooking” again! This time, I made a luscious red lentil chili, recipe via Honest Cooking, in my slow cooker.
In addition to taking better food photos, an authentic food blogger would take you through the prep steps with accompanying photos and descriptions, but I’m making a gigantic leap of faith in assuming you know how to rinse lentils, open cans, and measure spices. If not, well, maybe you should just buy some chili at the store. There’s no shame in that, you know.
I’m not a huge soup lover, but I do enjoy chili. Beef, turkey, bean–all of them! Chicken chili? Not so much. No clue why, really.
The thing about chili, though, is that I love it with melted cheese on top. Nothing wrong with that, but if I’m having a meat-based chili, then there’s extra fat involved and for me, that means reduced portion sizes. I’m sure I don’t need to tell you what I think about that!
With the frigid pre-winter weather we’ve been having lately, I wanted a chill chaser meal and only chili would do. And I wanted cheesey chili! Since I have a few pounds of red lentils in my pantry, I decided to go with a veggie version. As you know, lentils are high in protein and fiber, low in fat (or as I like to call it, pro-cheese!), and rich in vitamins and minerals. Win-win-win!
I followed the recipe almost completely (unusual for me, I know), because I got lucky and had most of the ingredients on hand, so why not? (I didn’t have any white wine I was willing to sacrifice, so I just skipped it.)
This is a super simple recipe–it’d have to be for me to make it–and cooks beautifully in the slow cooker. While it calls for 8 hours cook time, covered, I needed about 8.5-9 hours with my slow cooker. Just so you know and don’t bite into a crunchy lentil because your slow cooker tends to run a little behind those produced in this century.
The result was a rich and hearty chili that warmed my body and my soul. And with all that fiber and protein, a one-cup serving is quite filling! Quite!
I didn’t do a detailed nutritional analysis (I know this stuff is good for me), but ballpark calculations say 225 calories per cup. I added a quarter cup of 2% cheese (don’t judge; I like it!) which makes it slightly more caloric but ever so much more enjoyable.
Two thumbs up for me on this recipe! If you’re looking at a cold and wintry weekend, or you’re just wanting a tasty bowl of chili, you should give it a try.
Do you have a favorite chili recipe?