After one last gasp from summer in the form of a 3 day heat wave in the 90’s.. we’re finally into fall with gloom, rain, and falling leaves. I don’t know about anyone else, but it makes me want to snuggle up with Punk (my 17lb cat), marathon the last season of Game of Thrones (again), and make a big pot of spicy chili. With my garden still producing a ridiculous amount of peppers each day, I’ve got the spicy part covered! I also have an abundance of butternut squash which I’ve been waiting for patiently all summer to use in this Autumn Butternut Squash Serrano Chili.
A hearty mix of fresh peppers, onions, tomatoes, and butternut squash are simmered with spices, a pinch of cinnamon, and some pumpkin beer to really bring out the fall flavors. A perfect blend of sweet, spicy, and savory that makes enough to feed an army of White Walkers.. if they ate chili and not humans that is.
Autumn Butternut Squash Serrano Chili
(makes 6-8 servings)
1 1/2 to 2lb butternut squash
2 Tbs olive oil
1 large white onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, stem and seeds removed, chopped
2 serrano peppers, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 large tomatoes, chopped
2 cups vegetable (or chicken) stock
1/2 cup of your favorite fall beer (I used Blue Moon’s Harvest Pumpkin Wheat)
1/2 Tbs chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
Salt and pepper to taste
1 (15oz) can of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15oz) can of pinto beans, drained
Cornbread – Get the recipe for my Jalapeño Cheddar Skillet Cornbread
Use a potato peeler to peel the skin off the squash. Cut it in half lengthwise and use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and stringy insides like you would a pumpkin. Please be VERY careful when you’re cutting the squash. You’ll need to use a sharp knife, they’re a little tough to cut through, and slippery! Chop into bite sized chunks and set aside.
Heat olive oil in a large pot over low to medium heat. Once hot, add onion, bell pepper, and butternut squash. Cook for 5-7 minutes or until onions are translucent. Next you’ll add the serrano peppers and minced garlic and cook another 1-2 minutes.
Stir in tomatoes, vegetable stock, beer, and seasonings. Add more vegetable stock as needed until vegetables are submerged under the liquid.
Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, then stir in the beans. Cover with a lid and simmer for 20-25 minutes or until butternut squash is tender and easily pierced by a fork.
Dish it up into bowls, add toppings, and serve!