It’s my 30th birthday on Saturday, and I’m so so happy that I got to celebrate a week early with my bestie & college roommate, Kari. She came to stay for three whole nights, and the very last night we spent in my kitchen, drinking Wollersheim Prairie Fume, listening to A Prairie Home Companion, and cooking oh-so-slowly. We seemed to have all the time in the world.
I’d gotten my hands on a small pumpkin and a kabocha squash, and had a few cups of cooked dried chickpeas in the fridge. I also had two new-to-me spices in my cabinet: smoked paprika and Ras el Hanout, the Moroccan spice blend.
All of these things came together in a most beautiful way, made even more lovely with a dessert of homemade apple crisp Kari made for me. I got to spend dinner on Saturday with two of my favorite people ever.
Pumpkin, Kabocha Squash & Chickpea Chili
Vegan // Serves 6-8
Adapted from this recipe from Skinny Taste
2 cups cooked chickpeas
1/2 tsp olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
6 garlic cloves, minced
½ tsp ground ancho pepper
½ tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp Ras el Hanout Moroccan spice blend
4 tsp cumin
1 small pumpkin
1 small kabocha squash
2 cups veggie broth (homemade if possible)
Optional: 1/2 cup cooked grain (we had barley, but rice or quinoa would work too!)
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350*. Carefully cut pumpkin and kabocha squash into wedges. Toss in large bowl with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place on pan and roast for 30-40 minutes. Let cool.
Sauté chopped onion and minced garlic in olive oil in a large stockpot over medium high heat for 3-4 minutes. Add cumin and sauté for another minute.
After the pumpkin and squash have cooled, carefully remove the outer rind with a paring knife. Chop into 1″ cubes.
Add chickpeas, pumpkin, squash, broth, cooked grain, and spices to stockpot. Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Ladle into bowls and top with fresh cilantro.
Add chickpeas, pumpkin, squash, broth, cooked grain, and spices to slowcooker. Cook for 2-4 hours on low. Ladle into bowls and top with fresh cilantro.