Friday, March 6, 2009

Recipe: Little Grove Chili (vegan)

Yesterday, I visited Phipps Country Store (formerly known as Phipps Ranch) in order to pick up some beans. I am participating in a chili cook-off today and have created a chili that makes use of delicious heirloom beans and wheat berries.

This is what I picked up:

Pinquito beans and Desert Pebble beans
from Phipps Country Store and Farm in Pescadero, CA

The pinquito's are a real delight. Slightly sweet with a complex heartiness to their flavor. They are the perfect chili bean. The Desert Pebbles are inspiring as well. Although lacking the richness of the pinquito's they enjoy the same steadiness of flavor as potatoes do and I expect they'll take on the chili flavors very well.

I also picked up a good chili powder. I ended up using the entire bottle for the competition batch. The recipe below is family-sized.

Little Grove Heirloom Bean Chili with Wheat Berries


  • 1/2 cup Phipps-grown Desert Pebble beans (dry)
  • 1/2 cup Pinquito beans (dry)
  • 3/4 cup - 1 cup hard winter wheat berries (dry)
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon safflower oil
  • 1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 4 tablespoons Phipps Country Store chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup water (optional)

  • Directions

    1. Prepare the beans: Soak beans in enough water to cover overnight. Alternately, place beans in large pot with 2" of water to cover. Bring to a rolling boil and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, cover and let sit 1 hour.
    2. Rinse beans thoroughly after soaking.
    3. Prepare the wheat berries: Rinse wheat berries in cold water. Place wheat berries, salt, and 1 3/4 cup water in saucepan. Bring to a boil then simmer, covered, for 45 minutes. Drain and let sit while preparing next ingredients.
    4. In large pot, heat oil over medium high heat. Saute onions and garlic until onions are translucent.
    5. Add tomatoes, chili powder, beans, rice wine vinegar and brown sugar to pot. Simmer for 30 minutes.
    6. Add red pepper flakes and wheat berries. Allow to simmer another 30 minutes.
    7. Add water, if desired, to preferred consistency of chili.
      Update: I didn't win the cook-off tonight but I did get to enjoy many other excellent chilis!
    Nutrition information courtesy of

    Wednesday, March 4, 2009

    Tomato Seeds

    When my husband and I became engaged, he told me that he had a storehouse of seeds from a crazy time period when he had 80 plants going at a time.

    This morning, I pulled out the seed box and we have been chatting up a storm about these seeds most of the day.

    Many of them are from 2000 and 2001, but we expect that they'll germinate reasonably well. I am taking some time this evening to list what we have and what we'll be planting this year.

    P - Purchased seeds (all other seeds listed are harvested from the indicated year's crop)

    Key Tomato
    Key Tomato
    P2000 Aker's West Virginia
    P2000 Marmande
    P2000 Anna Russian
    2001 Marmande
    P2000 Aunt Ruby's German Green
    2001 Mortgage Lifter
    2000 Aunt Ruby's German Green
    P2000 Mountain Princess
    2001 Black Plum
    2001 Mr. Stripey
    2001 Black Zebra
    2000 Mule Team
    P2000 Blue Ridge Mtn
    2001 Nebraska Wedding
    P2000 Box Car Willie
    P2000 Nepal
    2001 Brown Flesh
    2001 Nepal
    2000 Burgess Red Stuffing
    2001 Nimitz
    1999 Campari
    2001 Odoriko
    2001 Carmello
    2001 Orange Strawberry
    2001 Cherokee Purple
    2001 Oregon Spring
    2001 Cherriette of Fire
    P2000 Orenburg Giant
    P2000 Costoluto Genovese
    2000 Pineapple
    P2000 Delicious
    P2000 Pruden's Purple
    2000 Dona
    2001 Purple Brandywine
    2000 Early Cascade
    2001 Purple Calabash
    2001 El Camino Real
    P2000 Red Brandywine
    2001 Enchantment
    P2000 Red Robin
    P2000 Erica D'Australe
    P2000 Riesentraube
    P2000 Eva Purple Ball
    2001 Russian 117
    2001 Evergreen
    2000 Sandul Moldovan
    2000 Flavoremore
    2001 Sausage
    2001 Fourth of July
    2001 Sigona's Giant Yellow
    2001 Fruity mix
    2000 Special Stupice
    2001 Fuzzy Mix
    2000 St. Pierre
    2001 Georgia Streak
    2000 Striped German
    P2000 German Johnson
    2000 Stupice
    P2000 German Red Strawberry
    P2000 Super Sioux
    P2000 Glasnost
    P2000 The 1884
    P2000 Grandpa's Cock's Plume
    P2000 Totem
    2001 Great White
    2000 Valenera(?)
    P2000 Green Zebra
    P2000 Violaceum Krypni-Rozo
    2001 Green Zebra
    P2000 Wes
    P2000 Hillbilly
    2001 Yellow Ruffled
    P2000 Hires Rootstock

    P2000 Isploin

    2001 Lime Green Salad

    I will need to update this with links to the varieties higher up in the alphabet that I missed.