Monday, February 1, 2016

Vegetarian Frito Pie: Why Can't Super Bowl Food Be Healthy?

Frito Pie in Santa Fe
My southern friends brag about their trashy Frito Pie, which often consists of greasy meat chili dumped over a bag of chips, lots of high fat cheese and sour cream.

That won't fly in my vegetarian household. We enjoy our trashy food, but we have to have a few healthier twists.

When my kids were little, they loved the canned Health Valley chili. I developed a recipe based on the favor profile:

Vegetarian Chili

2 T olive oil

1 yellow onion - diced
2 cloves garlic - crushed
1 tablespoon salt
2 cup dried pinto beans, rinsed 
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
2 carrots, diced
1/2 C textured vegetable protein (TVP)
1 T cumin
Freshly ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne (more if your kids like spicy food)
In a large saucepan add olive oil and add diced onions. Cook until onions soften.  Continue cooking while adding pinto beans, crushed garlic and 4 C water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and stir in salt. Cook for 1 hour, covered, then add tomatoes carrots, TVP and cumin and cook till carrots and beans are almost tender, about 45 minutes.
Stir in pepper and cayenne to taste, and add more salt if needed.
Serve over brown rice, with a dollop of tofu sour cream if desired.

It's also good with guacamole.
For Frito pie, pour Fritos into a large baking dish (11 x 9)
Top with chili, grate low fat cheddar on top and dot with tofu sour cream. Bake for 10 min at 350, until cheese is melted.

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