this chili is a variation of a recipe that i've been making for years - plentiful, warming/soothing, and super substantial. i guess there's some nostalgic here, as it was one of the first meals i made when i moved out of my parents house and into my own apartment. it was a meal i could be proud that i was able put together, and something that would feed and nourish me all week long. and when me and frank moved in together we would prepare it together too - summer squash chili in the warmer months, and a sweet potato or winter squash variety in the cold winter months. it's the kind of a mildly labored preparation that encourages cuddling up to a hot stove, as wind gusts find their way through the crevices in our windows. i generally serve a chili like this over a healthy mound of starchy rice, but there's this biscuit recipe that i've been working on for quite some time that i was super excited to pair with this chili pot, but also to share with you all!
the biscuits are a slight modification on a recipe from my cookbook (!!!, more on that later!), and they're kind of my favorite thing to make these days. first of all, they're all the "free's": gluten-free, vegan, soy free, etc., etc., and they check off two of my requisite biscuit boxes: tender and flaky. so, if i lived in a world where everyday-eats and thanksgiving collided, this would be my go-to. but if you're not into chili for a thanksgiving alternate, scrap it and just make the biscuits! they can be served alongside basically anything or on their own (i'm pretty sure me and frank ate an entire serving for dinner one night with a side of broccoli). excuse me while i sneak away and go make another batch ;) also, i've updated the sidebar of the blog for you all (--->), with some of my favorite thanksgiving-ish dishes!
wishing you all a cozy, peaceful holiday. i'll catch you in a couple of weeks! xo's!
black lentil, sweet potato + kale chili w/ kabocha biscuits (v + gf)
if you don't have kabocha squash on hand any other winter squash or sweet potato puree will work as an alternative. and both canned or homemade puree can be used for the biscuits. for the chili, feel free to sub in a diced winter squash variety or a root vegetable like parsnips/carrots, etc., or use collards for the kale, or quinoa instead of lentils.
| makes 6 two-inch round biscuits |
- 1 cup chickpea flour
- 1/2 cup sorghum flour
- 1/2 cup arrowroot
- 1 tablespoon mixed herbs (i used freshly chopped thyme + oregano)
- 2 teaspoons organic cane sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- freshly ground pepper
- 3/4 cup kabocha puree*
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- extra almond milk, for brushing (or, if dairy-free, you can also use an egg wash)
| serves 4-6 |
- 3 shallots, diced
- 1 large sweet potato (or 2-3 small sweet potatoes), diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 28-ounce can fire roasted crushed tomatoes
- 1 cup low-sodium vegetable broth (or water)
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked papprika
- 4 large kale leaves, roughly chopped (about 3 cups)
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley, extra for serving
- 1 cup cooked black beluga lentils
*to make the kabocha puree, preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment. slice the squash in half and rub the cut side with a bit of olive oil. place the squash half facedown on the baking sheet and roast for 35-40 minutes, until the flesh is tender. let cool completely before using.
- preheat the oven to 425°F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, set aside. whisk together the flours, arrowroot, herbs, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and pepper to taste. in a separate bowl, whisk together the kabocha puree, milk, oil, and vinegar. using a rubber spatula to mix the wet ingredients into the dry until dough begins to come together, then turn it out onto a floured surface and use your hands to bring the dough together to form a rectangle with a 1-inch thickness. use a 2-inch round biscuit cutter and punch out 6 biscuits, re-rolling as needed. brush the tops and sides of the biscuits with almond milk (or an egg wash) and bake, rotating halfway through, until the tops and edges of the biscuits are golden brown, about 13-15 minutes. serve the biscuits warm.
- heat oil in a large soup pot over medium heat, once the pot is hot, add the shallots and saute until soft and translucent, about 3 minutes. add the sweet potato and garlic and stir, saute until garlic is fragrant, about 1 minute. add the crushed tomatoes, water, and spices and bring it all to a simmer; cover the pot and turn the heat down to a low simmer, cook until the potatoes are tender and the liquid has reduced to half and the chili has thickened considerably, about 30 minutes. then add the kale and parsley and cook until wilted, about 2 minutes. lastly, turn off the heat and add the lentils, stir until combined.
- plate the biscuits and cut them in half, spoon a helping of chili between the biscuit halves and serve with a few extra pinches of chopped parsley.