Veggies for Carnivores: “Dad Approved” Vegan Chili

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I’ve never written about my cooking on this blog before, partially because my cooking methods aren’t very proper, and also because I didn’t think it was craft related, but I’m starting to think that’s bogus. I cook, and love to cook, a lot, and in almost every single way being a good cook is exactly like being a good crafter. You have to understand your materials and how to use them, think of the best ways to combine them to get your desired results, use “patterns” as guidelines if needed, and always keep your intended audience in mind. Sure, your materials may be corn and beans instead of fiber and cloth, but ultimately it’s the same process. Take some stuff, put it together, get some different – hopefully better – stuff. 

With cooking, however, your audience looms larger in the decisions you make. Most crafters don’t work on commission but for themselves, so when you’re suddenly tasked to creating a meal and must not only satisfy yourself but also your family, you’ve got a tough nugget to crack. Unless you’re serving actual nuggets, who doesn’t like nuggets?

Case in point – I worry about my own health a lot but I worry even more about the health of my loved ones like my Partner and my Dad. When you’ve got hard-core carnivorous or carbolicious men on your hands, it can be hard to get them to eat something veggiful. As a result I spend a lot of time coming up with veggie or vegan recipes that taste like heavy, fatty comfort food but that actually have not a single unhealthy thing in them. I used to try to find recipes for this, but over time found most vegan recipes wanted their healthy food to also taste like healthy food. Laaaame. That’s when I stopped using recipies entirely, and learned the best food comes from just figuring stuff out on your own.

To that end I want to share with you all how I make my luxuriously delicious vegan chili, which can be altered to be not-so-vegan if you want to up the ante a little. If you’re looking for a classic step-by-step recipe, tough. I don’t do that. Like I said – I think the best cooking in the world is like crafting and requires a lot of adjustment, feeling, and figuring things on the fly. If you want to be a really good cook and come up with your own recipes, you gotta be willing to go off the rails. The being said, I’ll do my best to explain how I make it in a way that you should be able to follow and alter to your own liking. Maybe you’re like me and you prefer this sort of cooking to a rigid recipe. If so, hurrah! You’re in the right place.

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