The best thing about not eating meat is that you know that nobody had to die in order for you to eat. It may not seem like it matters but after you do it for a while and then eat meat, you can really notice the difference. Meat just doesn’t have the same appeal anymore. It just looks like big chunks of death and suffering. But that’s just me and if you want to get spiritual, get ready to go to new heights. All that meat weighs you down spiritually. I mean you can’t kill things and then think that you’re going to be favored. But that’s just been my experience. I used to eat meat for years so I understand the craving for meat. But I don’t miss it. I hope you enjoy this recipe. XOXO Valerie
Originally published on Itdoesnttastelikechicken.com on January 10, 2017 By Sam
It has been nose-nipping, fingertips feel like they’re falling off, wonder why I don’t own snow pants, scarf wrapped high enough to meet my hat so that I just have a wee slit to see through, kinda cold this week. That and I seem to have one of those never-ending colds that don’t want to go away, no matter how much I ignore it. (I admit there are better cold remedies).
So between the two colds, all I wanted was something insanely delicious, hearty, satisfying, a big ol’ pot of warm me up from the inside. And then it happened, I made The Best Vegan Chili Ever!!!
See what I mean? Don’t you just want to bite that spoon!?
No really, this is serious stuff, friends. This isn’t the first pot of vegan chili that I’ve ever made. I’ve cooked up many of those three bean type chili recipes in the past, which are good, but they never feel particularly special to me. They were missing that oomph.
Today, the colds must have sparked some mad scientist creativity, because I decided to use a similar method to prepare tofu that I use in my Tofu Bolognese. The key is that the tofu is seasoned and then dried out in the oven. Then when you stir it into the sauce, it gets this gorgeously chewy, amazing, can’t-stop-eating texture. I used this same technique in this vegan chili recipe, and let me tell you, it was seriously the best idea ever.
This vegan chili is bursting with gorgeous spices, the double-bean action makes for a scrumptious heartiness, the rich simmered tomatoes, and that chewy, totally addictive tofu. I’m so deeply in love!
Just with all chili recipes, this vegan chili was delicious freshly made, but it was even better the next day. The tofu stays perfectly chewy and the flavours deepen and get even more flavourful.
To make the best vegan chili ever: Add the olive oil to a large pot and heat over medium-high heat. Add in the onion and garlic and sauté until the onion is translucent and just begins to brown. Add the tomatoes, beans, water, and all of the spices. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer and continue to simmer for 1 hour. If the chili gets too thick, just splash in more water to reach desired consistency.
In the meantime, prepare the tofu crumbles. Mix nutritional yeast, soy sauce, and olive oil together in a large bowl. Open and drain the tofu (no need to press it), then break off chunks and crumble with your fingers into the bowl. Do this with all of the tofu until you have a large bowl of crumbles. Stir the tofu crumbles well making sure all of the tofu is evenly coated in the nutritional yeast mix.
Spread the tofu mixture evenly over the pan. Bake for about 45 mins, stopping to stir the tofu every now and then. Keep a close eye on it towards the end so that it doesn’t burn.
You want the tofu to be nice and browned. The smaller crumbles will be darker than the larger crumbles, and that’s ok because it will provide a variety of texture. Mmmmmm tofu crumbles. I can’t help but eat a few right from the pan, but I seriously have to control myself as I may eat them all!
When the chili and tofu are both prepared, stir in the tofu crumbles and continue to cook the chili for another 5 minutes. This will allow the tofu to absorb the sauce and get gloriously chewy.
Serve hot with a dollop of vegan sour cream and a sprinkle of chives if desired. The best vegan chili ever!!! I’m so excited, I need to make another pot ASAP.