Sunday, February 28, 2010

Paella Follow Up and Chili

Paella Follow Up
As I mentioned yesterday, we had a birthday party to attend. The theme was being a paella party, so I volunteered to bring a vegetarian version. However, I've never had paella before and had no idea if I'd even like it. I'm really not much of a rice eater either, so anyone who really knows me would think it an odd choice. But, I'm always up for trying a new recipe, so why not.

Notes, I believe that I added in the peas too soon so they turned brown. So if you aren't using quick-cooking brown rice, then don't pay attention to the cooking times shown in the original recipe. You'll also need more liquid as well.

As for the flavor, I thought it was a little bland. Again, no idea what to expect. It wasn't bad by any means, but maybe my feeling towards rice skews my judgment a bit. Jason said it was really good, as did anyone who tried it. I do think that I could try adding flavors used in chorizo, like paprika, to give it more oomph. If any of you paella lovers out there make this and try it, I'd seriously like to hear your results and thoughts!

Simple Sunday
Today we had to finish the errands that at we so happily put off yesterday. It was another sunny day here, though not quite as warm. After the grocery store, I decided to do cardio, abs, and a floor work workout for glutes and thighs. Cardio was Cathe's Imax 3. I love this DVD. It consists of 10 intervals of a simple step routine followed by a cardio blast. After finishing I went right into the floor work from Butts & Guts and finished with abs from the same DVD. If you are ever in the market for a lower body workout that'll kick your booty into shape, Butts & Guts is definitely the one for you! OUCHIE.

After the workout, Jason and I both tried to do some cleaning: laundry, bills sorting, paper shredding, all the fun stuff that gets put off week after week. We did open up all the curtains to enjoy the sunshine though.

I had a butternut squash that I'd been wanting to use. So dinner tonight was Black Bean and Butternut Squash Chili.

Black Bean and Butternut Squash Chili
Ingredients:
1 tsp (or less) extra-virgin olive oil 
1 small yellow onion, diced
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 green bell pepper, diced
1 small poblano pepper, diced
1 butternut squash, peeled and cubed 
2 cups water or low-sodium vegetable broth
2 15 oz cans black beans, rinsed and drained
2 15 oz cans diced tomatoes (no salt), undrained
2 chipotle peppers in adobe, diced (more or less depending on heat preference)
3 oz tomato paste
2 tsp chili powder
sea salt and pepper to taste 
2 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp cumin

Directions:
Saute onion, bell peppers, and poblano peppers in small amount of olive oil until soft, approximately 5 minutes.

Add butternut squash and garlic. Saute approximate 5-7 minutes.

Add in remaining ingredients and simmer for approximately 1 hour or until butternut squash is soft and flavors have melded.
 I added the poblano pepper mainly because it needed to be used. I'm not sure how much additional flavor it really added, so it's totally optional. I do love this chili because of the textures and flavor combinations, it's a hearty, healthy meal.