Meatless Monday

As we're still seeing the slow decrease of the meat farming industry take place, more and more research is proving just HOW MUCH our consumption is impacting the world.

Giving up red meat has a bigger impact (on average) than giving up your car.

One great first step?  Give up meat for just one day a week.


As it's 58 degrees in LA right now, I can officially say that winter has settled in.  Yes, I wore earmuffs as I was walking my dogs this morning...  Judge away.

My reward for fiercely braving these frigid temps:

Three-Bean Chili via Smitten Kitchen

And my favorite cold-weather soups secret?  Cornbread dumplings.  If you're using an oven-proof pot, mix some cornbread batter about 20 minutes before you're ready to serve (I use Bob's Red Mill Cornbread Mix).  When the chili is ready, use an ice-cream scoop to drop dollops of the batter into the surface of the soup.  Pop the pot of chili + dumplings (they should be floating on the top, half of them exposed without the liquid covering them) into the oven at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes or until the top of the dumplings have started to become golden brown.  It's a nice combination of matzo ball soup and southern comfort food.

Grab the chili recipe from them, but here's what you'll need for your market run: 

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped small
1 to 2 peppers of your choice (see Notes, below), finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons table salt or 2 1/2 teaspoons kosher or coarse salt
1 12-ounce bottle beer
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes, fire-roasted if you can find them
1 1/2 cups mixed dried beans (see Note)
3 1/2 to 4 cups water

To serve: Lime wedges, sour cream, diced white onion, cilantro, corn or flour tortillas or tortilla chips or rice