I made a close version of this our first fall in Milwaukee, 8 years ago, and have made it every year since. Burton eats soup for lunch every week in colder months so this white bean chili, our favorite, sees pretty constant rotation from October to April. It’s much lighter than your standard chili, making it hard to tire of and the perfect transitional dish to take you from summer into fall. Like clockwork, as soon as the temperature dips into the 60’s again at the end of summer, there’s a pot of this on the stove (and now is the best time to make it too as you’re able to make use of fresh corn from the farmer’s market).
Soy curls are perfect in this soup, they stay firm and offer a great deal of contrast between the soft beans and vegetables. They’re made from just soy beans, are a whole food and mad convenient. I’ve gotten them at my local co-op up the street or on Amazon (more expensive than sourced locally). If you can’t find them, feel free to omit completely or add a block of cubed, roasted tofu instead though I do really recommend looking for them and buying a few bags if you do find them. I can’t imagine there’s a person on earth that wouldn’t love soy curls.
White Bean Chili with Soy Curls
makes 6 large portions or 8+ good sized sides
2 tbsp olive oil
1 small-medium onion, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 quart of vegan chicken broth
2 (16 oz) cans of fire roasted tomatoes
1 (16 oz) can of salsa verde (sub with plain blended tomatillos)
1 (7 oz) can of green chilies (sub with a few tbsp chopped jalapenos)
1/2 tsp dried oregano
2 tbsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp ground cumin
2 ears of corn (about 2 cups)
2 (16 oz) cans white beans (either small, navy or great northern but not cannellini)
1 package of soy curls (8 oz) (hydrated in hot water, then strained/squeezed all the liquid out to remove bean-y flavor)
Instant pot instructions –
On saute mode, add the onions and garlic with the olive oil. Cook for a minute, then pour in the salsa verde, the vegan chicken broth, tomatoes, green chilies and corn if using fresh from the cob (if using canned or frozen, add later with the beans). Add the spices, then the lid and pressure cook for 10 minutes. Release the steam from the instant pot, then add in the white beans, corn if using frozen/canned and the soy curls, stir well and hit ‘saute’ mode for 3 minutes until heated through.
Stove top instructions –
In a large pot over medium heat, saute the onions and garlic in the olive oil until shimmering and fragrant. Pour in the salsa verde, the vegan chicken broth, tomatoes, green chilies and corn if using fresh from the cob (if using canned or frozen, add with the beans). Add spices and bring to a boil, then simmer for 15-20 minutes. Add the white beans, corn if using frozen/canned and the soy curls to the pot and simmer 5 more minutes.