Chillin Veggie Style

In 1998, I became a vegetarian. In 2006, I became a pregnant woman and meat eater. These days, I don’t eat meat every day by any means, but it is still part of our diet. Today I made vegetarian chili with nongmo’d soy based veggie round ground, for the first time in a helluva long time.

I stopped eating meat shortly after our Mum died. To honour her life, and because I just couldn’t anymore. There were a couple of years where I ate some sea food, but that was a rare occurrence. I simply couldn’t stomach it. Over the years I developed an intolerance to dairy. So I cut that out too. I ate aLot of eggs, but for a good decade, I mostly survived on beer, fries and chickpea curries.

Then along came life. The minute I got pregnant I started craving turkey and pork. So I gave that to my body and he who grew within. At some point in his small life, I cut out pork, aside from bacon when he was of an age to fall in love with it. Anyone who knows me, knows how terrified I am of dealing with raw chicken, so if I do make us chicken, it is usually drumsticks in the oven. Aside from burgers and home made meatballs, he is not a fan of ground beef. In the years living up north, I would never say no to offerings of local or game meats. But I don’t fill our freezer with meats anymore. I have used either ground pork or ground turkey in our tacos, and even pork was out a while ago, after a bout of stomach flu or something that left me unable to stomach that. Recently I bought some frozen burgers and had a sick stomach thing that went on for days. (My son was fine, so who knows if it was the meat, but I’m off the burgers now too.) We still do ham sometimes. I mother a skinny little 8 year old boy! I am not going to cut out that which he will eat multiple servings of.  But, meat is expensive! Good, trustworthy, organic on occasion, friendly meat, it sure is pricy! And I don’t mind spending my thin dollars on meat and good healthy food when I need to…

But, right now he is on his 2nd very large serving of vegetarian chilli, and I am inspired! Lately I am more inclined to buy kosher (they are what is offered at our local store, and delicious!) veggie meatless patties for burgers and fake chicken burgers. Although I can’t see us giving up our fish patties or sticks anytime soon, I’d rather spend 5 bucks on a package of veggie alternative than 10 bucks on something dead and shrink wrapped! I hear a train a commin and I think it’s on a vegetarian track again! Slow train mind you. Maybe just meatLess if not free. Also, it is summer, and money is scarce. So I think we would rather eat a bowl of chick pea soup than a stew anyway! Stay tuned.

PS Tossed together veggie chilli recipe as follows;

Very large can of chunky stewing tomatoes, and 2 of that again of water in your best stewing pot. (if you had any onions or garlic on hand, saute them first…) While bringing to boil, chop whatever veggies are in the bin; today I used 4 halves of celery stalks, a handful of broccoli, and half a zucchini. Once boiling I added the  a hefty squirt of ketchup, a sizeable teaspoon of garlic powder, and half that of chilli powder of the mild sort, (kid friendly…) and then stirred in the entire package of round ground. Then I rinsed and put in one can of mixed beans (kind used for bean salads…) and a can of kidney beans. Then I put in a cup of frozen corn (what I had on hand although I really wish I had some baby corns…). I waited to put the round ground in until it was boiling, because it doesn’t need to be browned. If I was making tacos I would have done it sooner, but I like how it soaks in with the tomato juices but doesn’t get lost in it all if you add it later. Then I put the lovely tight lid on and ignored it for a while. (On medium heat) Put some rice on, stirred the chilli here and there. Meant to grate cheese to put on top to convince son to eat. Forgot. Gave son 2 helpings and he was ‘thinking’ about having some more! YUM!

I’d estimate that the entire batch might have cost 9 or 10 bucks, (but I had the canned goods given me when friends were going on holiday and clearing out their cupboards, so it cost even less this time…) and that amounted to 3 large servings already eaten, and 4 large yogurt containers full waiting to go in the fridge and freezer. If I had used meat, would have been a bit more. Anyway it wasn’t about the cost as much as the flavour and health factors. I think we are fans enough to try round ground in our soft tacos next time. And I seem to remember making nachos with round ground back in my Meat Free days!

Long live the deliciousness!

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