There’s something so comforting on lazy Friday evening like a big bowl of chili. Not only is great to have on a quiet solo night in, but it’s the perfect crown pleaser when you opt for having friends come around instead of heading out for the night. Make a big pot, have someone bring a bottle of wine (or tequila) lay out a toppings bar of scallions, cilantro, cheese, sour cream or Greek yogurt and some hot sauces and have people build their own bowls. It’ll be the new version of #BYOB
+ garlic (you choose, though 4 or 5 cloves normally does the trick)
+ 3 cans of beans (any color combo you like. I often do chickpeas, black and kidney but any would work)
+ 1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
+ 1 can diced tomatoes
+ chili powder (a couple teaspoons for a milder chili—go up from there depending on your preference)
+ chipotles in adobo (optional, but 1 or 2 chopped up adds great smokiness)
+ corn meal (optional)
1) Prep all the ingredients: finely chop the onion and garlic and set aside. Peel and cube the sweet potato, and open, drain and rinse all the beans.
2) In a deep pot, add a splash of olive oil and heat over a moderate/high heat and add the chopped onions and garlic. Stirring well so they don’t burn, cook them for about 2 minutes before adding the chili powder and chopped chipotles (if using) and allow all the aromatics to cook for about 5 minutes.
3) Add the cubed sweet potatoes and the tin of of tomatoes, season with salt and pepper, and stir. Add water until the sweet potatoes are just covered. (Tip: hot from the kettle is best because cold water added will stop the cooking process)
4) After giving the sweet potatoes a 5-10 minutes head start add the beans (remember, they’re already cooked so they don’t need as long.)
5) Allow to cook over a low heat with the lid on until the sweet potatoes are tender. About 5 minutes before it’s finished add a small handful of corn meal and stir through (if desired) for a thicker chili.
*Photo credit: Hoa Huynh