Cucumber, Corn and Tomato Salsa

My co-worker gave me some cucumbers she and her husband had grown in their garden. I wanted to use them right away as they were so fresh. This is a variation on a classic cucumber and tomato salad. I added charred corn for sweetness and smokiness. I also added poblano and jalapeno for spice. 

2 small or 1 medium cucumber, diced
2 ears corn
3 vine tomatoes, diced
1 poblano, diced
1 jalapeno, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tbls apple cider vinegar
2 tbls olive oil
2 tsps dry dill
1 tsp garam masala
2 tsps salt

I wasn't about to turn on the broiler to cook the corn. It's been in the 90's here. Instead, I used the same technique often used to char bell pepper. Put the shucked ears directly over a gas flame on the stovetop. If you don't have a gas stovetop you can broil them or use an outdoor grill. 

The corn will pop and make a bit of a mess on your cooktop, but it's worth it. 

Char the corn evenly all around. Allow to cool and them cut the kernels off the cob. 

Stir together all i…

Hormel Vegetarian (Vegan) Chili

The label says 'vegetarian' and it is, but little does Hormel know that their meat free chili is actually vegan. It's got a pretty short ingredients list (by today's standards) and they all seem pretty wholesome.

Hot peppers, tomato, beans and yummy delicious textured vegetable protein. I'm not kidding. textured vegetable protein is both yummy and delicious. it's not the most eloquent name, but it tastes good and has a nice mouth-feel. they should call it vegetable derived faux meat or just vegetable meat. yeah, i bet people would like that. vegetable meat sounds really good.

Anyway, i cooked and tried hormel brand vegetarian (vegan) chili for the first time today and I thought it was pretty darn good. It was a very mild chili as I expected from a mass produced product. Still it had a nice chili flavor. It was just mild. Easily rectified with a few dashes of hot sauce if you prefer. After tasting it plain over rice, I also added nutritional yeast to mine. Not because it needed the flavor, but just for extra aminos and vitamins. They went well together.

I made mine a complete meal pretty easily. I first began simmering 1 cup white rice in 2 cups water. I let that cook covered until about 1/3 of the water still remained. Then I added some frozen collard greens. Spinach, kale or mustard greens would also work.

I let the rice and greens cook some more. Until nearly all the water was absorbed and then i added the chili into the same pot and continued heating my concoction for approximately 7 minutes longer. Just until any remaining water was gone and the chili contents were thoroughly heated through.

I added my nutritional yeast to my own bowl of chili rather than to the pot. This way individuals can control how much, if any, is in their serving.

It tasted really good. Was very easy to make. Decidely inexpensive. Hormel may say on the label that their meat-free chili is vegetarian and yes, it is, but little do they know, it's also totally vegan.