November last year seemed to be all about cooking soups and stews... this year I seemed to have fixated upon chili. Pumpkin Chili. Zucchini Chili. Ground Beef & Bacon Chili. Chorizo Chili. You see its more like an obsession. Any chance there is a 12 step program for this? Probably not. I still have a couple pumpkin things I want to make before thanksgiving and was happy to check this one off my list.... It was delicious! I usually don't serve crock pot creations to company, but this was a hit. Thankfully since life requires occasionally breaking the rules. It was thick, spicy, the pumpkin added a creamy texture, beefy, and you could really taste the fall earthy spices of nutmeg, cloves, and sweet apple in the background.
Spicy Pumpkin-Apple Chili
Recipe adapted from A Pumpkin And A Princess
1 lb lean ground beef
1 medium onion
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/3 cup cinnamon apple sauce, no sugar added
1 cup of beef stock
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp course black pepper
1 can fire roasted tomatoes (14.5 oz)
1 can of pumpkin puree (15 oz)
1 1/2 cups of red veggie pasta sauce
1 can of light kidney beans, no salt added/low sodium, drained
1 can of black beans, low sodium, drained
2 Tbs chili powder
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp cumin
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
2 apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
Optional garnishes: oyster crackers, shredded cheddar cheese or your fav kind (I used a mild melty jack for mine), sour cream or Greek plain yogurt, cornbread, finely diced jalapenos (for more heat), or finely diced green onion
1. In a large skillet brown the ground beef. Half way through add in the chopped onion, salt and pepper. Once meat is cooked and onion is tender drain off the fat, and put into crockpot.
2. Add the remaining ingredients to the crockpot. Stir well.
3. Cook on high for 4 hrs.
4. Garnish during serving. Cool completely and cover in fridge or freezer for makeahead meals.