Pumpkin Chili

  1. 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  2. 1 clove garlic, minced
  3. 1 red bell pepper, cored, diced
  4. 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  5. 1 pound lean ground beef
  6. 4 cups diced tomatoes
  7. 2 cups tomato sauce
  8. 2 cups cooked kidney beans
  9. 1 cup whole corn kernels
  10. 1/2 cup diced green chilies, to taste
  11. 1 tablespoon chili powder
  12. 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  13. Salt and fresh black pepper
  1. Cut lid in top of pumpkin; set aside. Remove seeds and pith; replace lid.
  2. Bake at 375 degrees F for 20 minutes. Scoop out pumpkin flesh, leaving at least 1/2-inch to hold pumpkin shape. Dice pumpkin and set aside. Reserve pumpkin shell.
  3. In 6-quart saucepan, sauté onion, garlic and bell pepper in oil 5 minutes or until tender.
  4. Add ground meat; cook, stirring, until browned.
  5. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, reserved pumpkin (2 to 3 cups fresh or 2 cups canned), kidney beans, corn, chilies, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper.
  6. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, cover, simmer 30 minutes or to desired consistency. Stir often.
  7. Adjust seasoning. Serve from reserved pumpkin shell. Garnish if desired with shredded cheese and sour cream. Serve over cooked rice.
  8. Makes 6 to 8 servings

Chili Trivia:

  • Chili is the official state food of Texas
  • Cincinnati Chili was inspired by Greek and Macedonian immigrants around the turn of the 20th century
  • The intensity of heat in the taste of the Chile peppers usually decreases as the size of the pepper increases