As I mentioned in the previous post, I am not a vegan, but I believe some substitutions in vegan dishes are just as good, and in some cases better than the original non-vegan form. I made this chilli for dinner this week and completely fooled my wife into thinking she was eating a meaty bowl of chilli. She thought it was among the best bowls of chilli she had ever eaten. Then I told her. When she learned that this chilli was completely vegan her eyes were the size of saucers. She would’ve sworn she was eating chunks of sausage. And needless to say, she was ecstatic that I had made a dish so ridiculously healthy.
In the vegan world there is this pressure to shun all things animal, even the faux products. What I think is often overlooked is the transitional period. Depending on our age, most of us grow up on a very omnivorous diet. As we radically shift our belief system and take on a new lifestyle, we will naturally feel that there is something missing. Of course, for the hardcore activists high on their political pedestal, they may not notice their body is adjusting to the change. But for most, especially those who commit to veganism for dietary reasons, will end up missing some aspect of our omnivorous diets, whether it’s as blatant as a burger or as subtle as pouring soya sauce on their rice.
Personally, I don’t condone those heavily processed meat substitutes you find in the stores. Most of them are riddled with preservatives and additives. But for the very reason those products are produced, I stand behind anyone that feels the need to create the sensation of eating meat, after all it was only natural before making the change to veganism. As time goes on and the transitional period fades, then the lifestyle of veganism becomes natural with assimilation.
In this sequel to A Salute to Veganism, I would like to share my recipe for Chilli con Legumbres with Vegan Andouille Sausage.
Chilli Con Legumbres w/ Vegan Andouille Sausage
This chilli is very easy but has a few elements that require some attention. Firstly, you’ll notice we don’t actually add sausage directly to the chilli. This is because, without using lots of gluten and other stabilizers, the sausage will absorb a lot of moisture and turn to mush. Instead, we dry the sausage out and add it to an empty bowl just before adding the chilli to serve. That way the sausage will moisten but still have a bite to it.
Also, we’re using a taco seasoning to really boost the flavor. The taco seasoning is very easy to make and can be used for other applications, vegan or nonvegan. That’s up to you.
So let’s begin–
- 1/4 cup paprika
- 3 tbsp chilli powder
- 2 tbsp oregano
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 1 tbsp onion powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
- Combine all the seasonings in a small resealable container.
- Stir well, or even blend into a finer powder using a blender.
- Set Aside.
Vegan Andouille Sausage:
- 380g lentils
- 380g chickpeas
- 1 tbsp potato starch
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 large clove garlic
- 1 tsp smoked sea salt
- 1 tsp oregano
- ½ tsp black pepper
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
1.Preheat oven to 200°C.
2.Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and pulse to a coarse, but well blended texture.
3.Spread mixture over an oiled baking sheet.
4.Bake for 30 minutes, then turn off oven and let Andouille mixture dry out for 1 hour.
5.Remove from oven and break into small bite-size pieces. Set aside.
Chilli Con Legumbres:
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 stalks of celery, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 or 2 hot chilies, minced
- 1 large carrot, finely grated
- 1 cup of chopped mushrooms, your choice
- 8 ripened tomatoes, chopped
- 1 cup vegetable stock or boiling water
- 1/4 cup taco seasoning, see recipe above
- 1 tbsp chilli powder
- 1 tsp cocoa powder
- 2 tsp smoked sea salt
- 1 can (230g) kidney beans
- 1 can (230g) black beans
- In a large pot, over medium-high heat, add oil, onions, celery, garlic, and chilies. Sweat them for 5 minutes.
- Then add carrot and mushrooms. Continue cooking for 10 minutes, until mushrooms release the moisture they absorbed.
- Add tomatoes and stock. Bring to boil. Then turn down heat to a simmer.
- Add the remaining ingredients and let simmer for 90 minutes uncovered, to thicken.
- grated carrot
- sliced chili pepper
- Andouille sausage
- In heated serving bowls, place a handful of the Andouille sausage.
- Then pour the chilli over the sausage. Stir to incorporate sausage.
- Garnish with carrot, parsley, and sliced chili.
- Serve with fresh bread.