01 December 2011

Raw Chili (Nut Free!)

As many of you may (or I guess, may not1) know, many "gourmet" raw food recipes rely pretty heavily on nuts for texture/consistency/creaminess/etc... I don't have any nut allergies, but I do find that nut-heavy raw dishes can be... well... just plain heavy in general. While I like nuts, and I love raw food and interesting raw food creations, my stomach doesn't want meals to consist primarily of a big ball of ground nuts.

So yesterday, after my driving-home-from-work dinner idea morphed from a nut-free raw burger into nut-free raw chili, I thought my substitute ingredient idea was so clever. I went straight to the food processor to experiment, and when a delicious batch of nut free raw chili emerged, I was pretty thrilled and rather impressed with myself.

Then I sat down at the computer and found2 that I am hardly a trailblazer. Nut free raw chili has been done before (many times) with some differences here and there. The main ingredient, however, is always the same... mushrooms!
Oh well, I'm going to post my recipe anyway because, who knows, this version might be just different enough, and someone might really like it.3
If you are weirded out by the thought of don't typically like raw mushrooms4, at least consider giving it a chance; maybe make a smaller batch to try it out. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Raw Chili (Nut Free) 
Serves 1-2 

  • 170g (6oz) Crimini or white button mushrooms, coarsely chopped
  • 85g (3oz) Carrots, coarsely chopped or julienned
  • 1 Medium Roma Tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 Red Pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 Clove of Garlic (or more, if you're in to garlicky - just remember, raw = more potent)
  • 1 Tbsp Coconut Aminos (or 3/4 tsp Bragg's Liquid Aminos - not soy free.)
  • 2 tsp Chili Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin
  • Scant 1/8 tsp Cayenne (Optional)
  • Salt and/or Pepper to taste
  • Hot Sauce (Optional)
In a food processor fitted with an S blade, pulse together chopped mushrooms, carrots and red pepper until the mixture is crumbly but still coarse - the goal is not to puree it. Transfer the mixture to a separate bowl and set aside.

The mushroom/carrot/pepper mixture should look something like this.
Add chopped tomato, garlic, aminos, chili powder, and cayenne (if you're using it) to the food processor and blend until more or less pureed.

Pour the tomato mixture into the mushroom mixture and stir together until uniformly combined.
Let the mixture rest for 5-10 minutes, and it's ready. Easy, eh?

Gobble it up as is, or garnish with sliced avocado and maybe a few (or more, if you like the heat) dashes of hot sauce and serve! It paired quite nicely with Coriander Avo Crackers.

The Coconut Aminos impart saltiness, but you can add a bit more salt to suit your taste buds. If you use Bragg's Liquid Aminos, exercise a bit more caution in adding additional salt - Bragg's is saltier.
You can add a dash of cold-pressed EVOO, if you'd like a richer mouth-feel. You could also try playing with other vegetable additions that might strike your fancy: fresh raw corn (if part of your diet), celery, onion... go nuts!5

Create a Fabulous Day.

1. I really shouldn't make assumptions.
2. Via the magic that is Google.
3. I do. 
4. They're (magically) delicious... no, really.
5. Without even adding them to your food!

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