Crock Pot Butternut Squash Chili

Winter has come, well, apparently given that the temperature seems to drop. However, this year it’s 30 degrees one day and then 65 the next. Is anyone else like, “I need the weather to get it together?” I know I am. 

When the cold temperatures hit, I always want something nice and hot to eat. Temperature hot, not too spicy so I can actually enjoy my food. So I tried a Butternut Squash Chili for the crock pot from Damn Delicious, I omitted the turkey because I wanted a vegetarian version and some peppers. It was good, aside from the fact I added way too much chipotle pepper. See, I went wrong when she said 2 chipotle peppers and I just grabbed a large one from the can. That sucker was probably large enough to equal 3 or 4 small chipotle peppers. I added it and went on about my business. I didn’t realize how spicy it was until my first bite the next day at work. And for those wondering why I didn’t taste it as I was cooking, well, I just didn’t and started putting it away in my meal prep containers for the week once everything had cooled.

My mouth was on fire and my tummy was warming up and not in a good way. So what do I add to decrease the spice? I messaged my friend Kim. Kim usually has all the cooking answers and she didn’t disappoint me. I had to add dairy. The next day I added cheese, sour cream, and one of my favorites, guacamole. And with the first bite with my add in’s, there was success! I was able to eat it without having to fan my mouth! Long story short, if you made your food a little hotter than you would care to- go grab the sour cream, cheese, and guacamole and salvage it.

Here below is the modified recipe that I used with some spice modifications for next time:

Ingredients: 

2 cans (15 oz each) diced tomatoes

2 cans (15 oz each) black beans

1 can (15 oz) garbanzo beans

3-4 cups of diced butternut squash

1 small Chipotle pepper, diced

2 Tbsp garlic, minced

1 Tbsp chili powder

2 tsp cumin

2 tsp smoked paprika

2 tsp dried oregano

Pinch of kosher salt and pepper

1-2 cups of water Or Vegetable broth or Chicken

Garnish- Sour cream, guacamole, cheese

Crock Pot Butternut Squash Chili

Instructions:

  1. Get your crockpot situated on countertop and turn it on low. (Make sure its plugged in!)
  2. Pour the tomatoes, blacks beans, garbanzo beans, and chipotle pepper into the crockpot. 
  3. Add all of your spice including the garlic and the salt and pepper. 
  4. Stir
  5. Add the butternut squash.
  6. Stir
  7. And then add the 1-2 cups of water. I prefer mine a little thick, yet with some sauce so I do 2 cups of water. But to each his own.
  8. If you want to cook it on low, let it sit for 608 hours; if you want it done in less time then turn the dial to high and let it cook for 3-4 hours. 
  9. Once its done, plate it and garnish with the sour cream, guacamole, and cheese.
  10. Enjoy!

To Write

I honestly used to hate reading. Does anyone remember the accelerated reader program in school? You know where you had to read books for points? It killed my love of reading because I couldn’t read the books I was truly interested in. Of course the books I liked were never on the list. Thanks to that I stopped reading for fun and only read a book when I had to. 

I didn’t read for fun again until I was in my early twenties. My mom saw a book with a red headed woman with a motorcycle on the cover and read the description. Since I grew up on Buffy, my mom handed me the book- Jeaniene Frost’s, One Foot In the Grave. I read that book and was hooked. I fell in love with reading, but it also ignited something within me to write. I never thought about writing until then. The way that Jeaniene made me fall in love with her characters made me want to create my own. So I started writing my own stories, but I’ll be honest I don’t have any formal training. But every time I wrote a story I was full of excitement and left to my own imagination. It was great! Since I wanted to learn how to write short stories, I ended up signing up for a 16 week writers course. I’ve only been in it for 3 weeks, but I’m learning a ton. So I thought I’d bring you along for the ride and comment on how it’s going.

Wish me luck!

Day 22

On Day 22 of our meditation challenge we are focusing on Love and Kindness. Have you ever met someone and had to remind yourself that they too, are a child of God? This happens to me often. I’m not ashamed to admit it. So sometimes when I need to extend love and kindness to a person who isn’t so kind I use this meditation. I hope it helps you too!

Love and Kindness Meditation

Hummus Bowl

Ever look in your fridge and think “I have no idea what I want?” That happens to me often on the weekends, when I already did my meal prep and ate everything I made. So recently, I had some hummus left in the fridge and all the salad fixings…but no meat like chicken or tuna. I’d heard of hummus bowls but never tried one and honestly I was afraid I was going to hate it, but I said I’ll give it a shot. It was one of the best and most delicious salads I have ever had… and guess what? I was actually full afterwards! Check out the recipe below:

Hummus Bowl

Ingredients:

1/2 cup cooked brown rice

1.5 cups mixed greens 

1/4 cup hummus (I LOVE garlic hummus)

1/4 red pepper, diced

1/4 cucumber, diced

2 Tbsp green or black olives, halved

1/2 stick celery, diced

1-2 slices onions (white or yellow), diced

1/2 Roma tomato, diced

5-6 Whole wheat crackers (Triscuits) served on the side

Dressing:

Pinch of pepper, salt

Drizzle of Olive oil

1/2 lemon, squeeze for juice

Instructions:

  1. Cook your rice by the instructions on the back of the container.
  2. As the rice is cooking dice up the red pepper, cucumber, olives, celery, onions, and tomatoes.
  3. Place the lettuce at the bottom of your bowl.
  4. Next layer add the rice and then top it with red pepper, cucumber, olives, celery, onions, tomatoes, and hummus in your bowl.
  5. Drizzle Olive oil over your bowl and squeeze lemon juice over your toppings. 
  6. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  7. Place crackers on the side.
  8. Enjoy!