I got a request for a vegetarian meal, one that was not drenched in cheese, and I was happy to oblige. Although I am not a vegetarian (obviously), I love vegetarian food and religiously follow Meat Free Monday every week. I also try cut on my meat consumption during the rest of the week and often land up eating a couple of vegetarian meals.
As I have mention in previous posts, raising livestock for consumption is one of the major contributors to climate change and is also responsible for deforestation, land conversion and other associated effects. Everyone should make a concerted effort to reduce the amount of meat they eat, especially red meat such as beef and lamb, and Meat Free Monday is a good way to start.
I am always on the look out for new and exciting vegetarian recipes, ones that are not overloaded with cheese, pasta or that have some processed veggie pattie that is supposed to taste like chicken. Vegetarian food doesn’t have to be that boring and Doug, who loves his steak, wors and lamb roasts, even has he favourite Meat Free Monday Classics. I even convinced my dad with a Meat Free Monday meal, and he is the toughest critic!
This year I have been in a very Mexican and South American food phase. I literally cannot get enough of guacamole, tacos, enchiladas, black beans, chimichurri and I could go on for ever! I have tried a couple of vegetarian versions of tacos and discovered the most delicious black bean soup recipe ever. But this week the Meat Free choose was vegetarian chilli. It is one of those vegetarian recipes that could convert any meat-lover. It’s probably not even close to authentic but the spices give it a lovely kick and the roasted butternut makes it a fulling and hearty meal.
In addition to the delicious chilli, you can add a number of condiments such as sour cream/plain yoghurt, tortilla chips, lime pickled onions and you can even eat in a taco or burrito or serve it with rice. Honestly, its so delicious and after a night in the fridge it was even better the next day for lunch!
Serves 4-6 (4 very large portions)
- 1 kg butternut, cubed
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1 green pepper, diced
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp coriander seeds
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (add more or less depending on how hot you like it)
- 1 tin whole peel tomatoes
- 1 tin black beans, drained
- 1 lime
- 1/2 cup coriander, chopped
- Olive oil
- Preheated the oven to 180 C
- Place the butternut on a baking tray, drizzle with olive oil andseason with salt and pepper
- Roast for 40-45minutes or until soft and caramelised
- Add a lug of olive oil to a pop on medium heat and add the onion and garlic
- Toast the cumin and coriander seeds, then use a mortar and pestle grind coarsely
- Add the cumin and coriander seeds and the rest of the spices to the onions
- Cook until the onions are soft
- Add the green pepper, tomatoes and black beans as well as a tin of water
- Simmer for 10 minutes, then add the butternut and simmer until some of the water has reduced and it is a nice, thickish consistency
- Take off the heat and squeeze the juice of one lime over the top
- Serve in bowels with chopped coriander and any additional condiments
*If you don’t had any dairy condiments such as sour cream, I think this dish is vegan as well