The combination of sweet roasted butternut squash, bittersweet chocolate and beans in a smoky tomato sauce rich with cinnamon, cumin and chillies is almost enough to turn me vegetarian. Especially as it is also healthy, gluten free and combines some of my favourite things in one lip smacking dish. Seriously, hold on one second whilst I go grab another mouthful.
As you follow this blog it will become obvious that I love love love love love butternut squash. So anything new with butternut squash goes into my ‘to cook no matter what’ pile.
I used to find it difficult to keep bite size pieces of butternut squash from disintegrating in foods like curries and stews which called for it to simmer for a while. That was till I discovered the tip on roasting it and adding it in at the last minute. Try it yourself and see what a difference it makes.
This christmas, my friends (you have been warned) will be sitting down to this scrummy dish. It will be an alternative to nut roast.
This is an easy vegetarian chilli recipe especially so because you have most of the ingredients in your pantry already. So what is stopping you? And what is the weirdest thing you have put into your chilli?
More Delicious Butternut Squash Recipes
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Vegetarian chilli – chocolate and butternut squash chilli
- 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
- 1 ½ tsp ground cumin
- 1 ½ tsp smoked paprika
- Olive oil
- 1 onion
- 2 peppers
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 2 chillies
- Handful of fresh coriander
- 50 g of dark chocolate
- Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas 6.
- Peel and cut the butternut squash into bite size pieces and add to a baking tray.
- Add in ½ tsp each of cinnamon, cumin and smoked paprika, some salt and olive oil, mix well and roast until they are soft. Turn pieces regularly so that they dont burnt on one side. Baking time depends on the size of the squash but mine are normally ready in about 20 mins.
- Remember to keep and eye on the butternut squash and when it is baked take it out and keep warm.
- Whilst the squash is in the oven, peel and chop onions, pepper and garlic. Remove the seeds from the chilli and chop these too.
- Heat some olive oil in a pot over medium heat, add in onion, garlic and pepper and fry for about 5 mins. You can add in 2 tbsp of water to avoid the vegetables burning.
- Then add in the chillies and the remaining spices and fry for about 5 mins till fragrant and well blended in. It is very easy for spices to burn or stick to the pot so add in 2 tbsp of water and stir regularly.
- Drain the beans and pour them along with the chopped tomatoes into the chilli and mix to combine. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat, cover and let simmer for about 20 mins.
- Then mix in chocolate (a little bit at a time till you get the taste you prefer) and season with salt and then take off the heat.
- Chop and stir in the coriander and warm butternut squash carefully so that it does not break and serve.
- Tweak spices to your specific taste. More chillies if you like it hotter or less if you don’t.
- If you like your chilli a bit sweeter, then add in some honey to taste.
- Feel free to add in more or less chocolate.