Pumpkin and Black Bean Chili
1 small pie pumpkin
1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 can (28 oz) plum tomatoes, chopped
2 cans (19 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 bottle (300 ml) stout (such as Guinness or Dragon)
2 tbsp brown sugar or maple syrup
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp ground cumin
1 tsp each cinnamon and oregano
2 chipotle peppers, finely minced (that’s two *individual* peppers, not cans)
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
To make the pumpkin easier to cut, pierce with a fork a few times and microwave on high for 1 minute. Set aside to cool.
Once pumpkin is cool enough to handle, cut in half. Scoop out and discard the seeds (or save them to make toasted pepitas), then cut each half into six wedges. Using a sharp paring knife, cut the peel from each wedge, then chop into 1/2″ cubes.
Pour the olive oil into a large heavy-bottomed pot set over medium-high heat. Add onion and saute until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and squash, and continue cooking for another 5 minutes, or until onion is golden. Stir in tomatoes, beans, beer, brown sugar, spices and chipotle peppers.
Bring the chili to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 25 minutes or until the pumpkin is tender. Stir in red pepper and corn, and continue simmering for another 5-10 minutes or until corn is bright yellow and peppers are soft.
Serve piping hot with your favourite chili garnishings – grated cheddar, sour cream, chopped cilantro, green onions or all of the above (which is my personal preference).