VEGETARIAN CHILI

Wednesday, April 21, 2010 by


The inspiration for this dish was from Cook’s Country. I saw this episode this weekend where the chef prepared Cincinnati chili with meat. The interesting thing about this chili was that there were no beans in the chili with some hot spices and ground meat and this chili was served over pasta. I wanted to try this at once and the same evening I made a vegetarian version of it, so that my husband can also have this. I made a few changes in the original recipe by substituting ground soya nuggets for ground meat and also used some pasta sauce to thicken the sauce. This was a hit and the pasta was so good, much better than the store brought sauces. I think this chili can also be served with garlic bread or even as a dip with some pita or corn chips.


INGREDIENTS:

  1. Pasta sauce or tomato sauce, 1-1/2 to 2 cups.
  2. Tomato paste, 1 tablespoon.
  3. Onion, medium-sized, 1.
  4. Garlic paste, 1 teaspoon.
  5. Soy granules, 1 cup.
  6. Chili powder, 1 teaspoon.
  7. Cinnamon powder, ¼ teaspoon.
  8. All spice powder (can be substituted with garam masala), ½ teaspoon.
  9. Oregano, ¼ teaspoon.
  10. Fresh parsley, ¼ cup.
  11. Brown sugar, a little. (I used agave nectar here).
  12. Salt and pepper as per taste.


PREPARATION:

To cook the soy granules, drop them in boiling water and let them cook for 2 minutes. Switch off the stove and let the nuggets or granules sit in the hot water for 5 minutes. Drain the water and wash them twice and remove excess water from the granules or nugggets. Run them in a blender or food processor and blend everything into a smooth paste. Dice the onion finely. Heat a pan with some olive oil. When the oil turns hot, add the chopped onions and sauté for a few minutes until it is tender. Then add the garlic and sauté for a few more minutes. Add the powders and fry for a few minutes by adding a little more oil if needed. Then add the herbs, tomato sauce or pasta sauce, and tomato paste along with some salt and pepper. Let it cook for 5 minutes. Add the blended soya nuggets, mix everything well and cook closed for another 5-7 minutes. Serve hot over pasta with some grated cheese on top.



STEEPED BITTERGOURD JUICE/TEA AND SOME FACTS ABOUT HbA1c

I wanted to share a healthy soup idea with this post. This is from my mother-in-law. She always prepares a soup like this just before lunch for my father-in-law to keep his blood sugars under control. This is just bittergourd steeped juice/tea. Steeping the bittergourd like this concentrates all the essential juices even more than making a side dish or gravy with bittergourd. Drinking raw bittergourd juice is also very good for blood sugar control but I found that too bitter for me, so I just drink a steeped juice. I feel that making small changes like these goes a long way in preventing diabetes or pre-diabetes if you are in the risk group. I usually boil some slices of bittergourd (may be from a whole bittergourd) in a cup of water (sometimes I even microwave it for 2 minutes) and strain it and drink the water. I found this bitter for the first couple of times but eventually I acquired a taste for this and these days the bitterness doesn’t bother me.







Lifestyle changes like this (especially with diet and exercise) has helped me in keeping my HbA1c also known as hemoglobin A1c within the normal range for the past couple of years. HbA1c is a test which gives the average blood sugars for the last 3 months. This will give an idea about what our sugars have been running and if it is on the borderline and high, it can be brought down with diet and exercise. Sadly, many people do not know about the existence of tests like these in India. Friends, if you have a relative who is a diabetic or if you have a strong family history of diabetes at an early age (even ladies who have had gestational diabetes and are normal now), ask your doctors to write this test for you. For people with diabetes, this test has to be taken once in 3 months. Other than that it will be ok to have the blood work done once a year to make sure everything is normal. For more information about HbA1c click here

45 comments:

SathyaSridhar said...

Gita,,,nice recipe dear pasta looks great with ground soya,,same pinch n same sweet you dont believe this even me too made spaghetti in minced soya gravy for my hubby's esterday's dinner, he s in diet so i want to cook light food for him,,,all recipes looks great dear paavakai looks fresh n hot..

Babli said...

Wonderful and interesting dish. Veg chilli looks spicy, delicious and fabulous. Thanks for this lovely recipe.

Priti said...

Pasta looks good and so the post...quite informative Geeta

divya said...

Wonderful and interesting dish.looks yummy..thanks for lovely recipe.

hi Gita i am in vienna,va 22180

Subhie Arun said...

wow lovely dish yar

Cool Lassi(e) said...

Love the meatless chili and very informative post about keeping diabetes at bay. I will tell my dad and mom. They don't have diabetes YET. But it runs in the family. I will start drinking this bitter gourd juice as well.

Pavithra Srihari said...

veg chili looks so wonderful ... ofcourse soya is vegeterian's meat :) atleast my meat .

Very good info about paavakkai

Priya said...

Vegetarian chilli looks fantastic, love the addition of soya, Thanks for sharing many informations dear, truly helpful, btw that bittergourd tea is completely new for me..

Mrs.Menagasathia said...

woww looks awesome dear!! i like both recipes!!

Meena said...

The veg chili is gr8, gita..also the bittergourd juice!my mom makes it often...its wonderful how you have passed on so much info abt diabetes...gr8 to know & good things to adopt, since most of us r prone to it nowadays...Cheers!

Kalyani said...

pasta looks delicious ......

Kalai said...

Interesting dish Gita! Sure, it wouls definitely go well with a plain toast and chips! Nice recipe. And thanks for the info about the blood sugar test, I am unaware of it! Will let my parents know.

R said...

lovely recipe! the bitter gourd juice info was really useful! thnx for sharing.

Pari said...

Gita the pasta looks great with the ground soya, very interesting. I loved the read on diabates and bittergourd.

Soma Pradhan said...

Wow..yummy very yummy.....

Hamaree Rasoi said...

Hi Geetha

Pasta looks very nice. Including Soya did the trick. Very Nice Clicks.

Deepa
Hamaree Rasoi

Geetha Achal said...

மிகவும் நல்ல குறிப்பு..அதவும் சக்கரை அளவு மற்றும் அந்த டெஸ்ட் பற்றி நீங்கள் பகிர்ந்தது மிகவும் அருமை...

Yummy Team said...

Great post Gita..Love the vegetarian chilli recipe..

Malar Gandhi said...

That is one great information abt diabetes, and I really appreciate the idea of bitter gourd juice, I can hardly find that vegetable here, but will keep that in mind for future use.

PALATABLE said...

Looks great, thanks for sharing the info about diabetic and benefit of drinking bitter gourd....

http://treatntrick.blogspot.com

Sandhya Hariharan said...

Lovely recipe with pasta.. Quite an interesting variation

Padma said...

Gita very nice recipe. Looks spicy and delicious and very filling.

Ann said...

very creative and tempting Dear.. Looks delicious

Rumana Rawat said...

Wonderful and interesting recipe.. i love the pasta:-)

Cham said...

I made a version with soya crumble too! I never heard of this test! I will check it!

Kiran said...

Dear Gita,Pasta with vegetarian chili sounds very interesting and loks very hearty and healthy.
Thanks for sharing the recipe for bittergourd tea.

I have some awards for you at my blog,please accept them.

http://kiranjay.blogspot.com/2010/04/drumstickmunagakaya-curryhealthy-and.html

Ms.Chitchat said...

Interesting pasta,loved it. Thanks for the info on diabetes and the bitter gourd drink.

Sushma Mallya said...

Nice recipe gita, beautiful clicks too...and very useful post as well..thanks for sharing it..

sangi said...

wow!tnx 4 the wonderful recipe dear!luv the addition of soy gr. pasta luks superdelicious!

Kanchan said...

Pasta looks yummy and thanks for sharing this healthy soup too.

Aruna Manikandan said...

Nice informative post
Wonderful recipes..
Bittergourd tea sounds healthy and new to me..
Thx. for sharing

Vegetatarian chilli looks delicious.

J said...

very informative post..loved the recipe..

RAKS KITCHEN said...

Nice recipe and sounds very healthy!

Seena said...

Gita, that was a useful information, thanks! :)

Nandini said...

Wow! This veggie chili is very tempting and the drink is really healthy!

Viki's Kitchen said...

Much informative post Gita. Chili looks delicious and the drink seems very healthy too.

Viki's Kitchen said...

Chili looks delicious and the drink seems very healthy Gita. Perfect recipes for the diet. Way to go dear!

Vijis Kitchen said...

my first visit. Nice blog and all recipes are very good.

lovely dish. veg chilli.

pls visit http://vazhvuneri.blogspot.com

Valarmathi said...

Veg chilli looks so yummy and inviting. Bitter gourd juice Thanks for sharing the inform on bittergourd juice.

Gulmohar said...

Great recipe..pasta looks so delicious. I know this bittergord juice. My grandmom used to drink this when she came to know that she is diabetic..but later over the years, she just stopped it..maybe got bored ;-)

Preethi Rajeev said...

Yumm the pasta looks delicious and rich.

Sukanya said...

Gita, you have a wonderful blog here. Am really impressed by your healthy and easy recipes. I love cooking and am definitely taking your recipes. Will let u know how they came out :)

And you are from Herndon. Thats so close. Im in Falls Church :)

I also wanted to thank you for stopping by my site. I'd really appreciate that :)

Cheers,
Sukanya

Panchpakwan said...

Pasta sounds healthy with soya chunks.
Very useful info you have shared.
Thax!

Akshaya said...

Hi.. do you steep raw pieces of karela or bitter gourd in hot boiled water just like we do for G-tea or Green Tea??

Gita Jaishankar said...

Yes I steeping karela is same as with green tea....you can steep it for less time say a minute if you want the soup to be less bitter.