Celeriac – An unattractive turnip-like little root, with a flavor similar to celery. It is used a lot in Mediterranean and European cuisine.

Some people like to grow it, or you can find it at farmer and produce markets. Use it to add a new texture and gain the benefits of root veggies to this medium chili.

Like other hearty meals from overseas, this one is light on the digestion, but keeps you full and going for hours. This recipe provides an easy way to make roasted butternut squash by itself or for any dish that requires it.

Serves 6-8

Ingredients: 

(All ingredients are organic unless otherwise indicated. Feel free to substitute ingredients or use dry spices as needed.)

  • 3 cups Black Turtle Beans (cooked)
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil or butter
  • 1 large onion (peeled and quartered)
  • 4 large garlic cloves (peeled)
  • 3 1/2 cups tomatoes
  • 1 butternut squash or pumpkin peeled and cubed to 1/2 inch
  • 1 celeriac root peeled and cubed to 1/2 inch
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro chopped
  • 1 quart stock (homemade veggie stock works great)
  • 3 whole dried chili peppers (for a medium heat, use 1 hot cayenne & 2 Hungarian wax peppers
  • 1 Tbsp paprika
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp Real sea salt (real sea salt isn’t bright white)

Tools you’ll need: blender or food processor.

1. Make the black beans, preferably the day before you wish to serve.

2. Add tomatoes and juice into a large pan. Add in the salt and all the dry spices, except the bay leaf.

Bring to a simmer, then lower heat and let it cook for about an hour (or until the squash is done baking). I use a diffuser on the stove top burner so the tomatoes won’t scald. Stir often. Add water or stock to thin if needed.

3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add the butter or oil to a cast iron skillet or glass baking dish and spread evenly. Add the cubed celeriac and butternut squash, the whole garlic cloves, and the quartered onion. Add 1/3 of the stock. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes or until the squash cubes are fork tender.

4. Remove just the squash and celeriac from the dish/skillet. Add the fresh cilantro, seasoned tomatoes and juice, and just the onion, garlic, and what’s left of the liquid in the baking dish to the blender in batches, and puree.

5. Combine pureed mixture, and the celeriac and squash cubes into a stock pot. Add black beans, bay leaf, the remaining stock, and salt. Let it cook on low for as long as possible.

Note: For thicker chili, puree one or two cups of the beans in a blender or food processor (steel blade) and stir back into the pot

Chili will keep well for 3-4 days refrigerated. Freeze leftovers for another day or use as a side dish or over a baked potato.