A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from November 13, 2007
Vegetarian Chili (Meatless Chili)

Chili is the official state dish of Texas, but the legislators meant chili con carne (chili with meat). Vegetarian chili became popular in the 1960s and 1970s and was first featured in cookoffs in the 1970s.

“Meatless chili” might contain chicken broth is not the same as “vegetarian chili.” During World War I (1918), “meatless days” were common and “meatless chili” was first offered. “Meatless chili” was also served during World War II.

Wikipedia: Chili con carne
Chili con carne, often known simply as chili, is a spicy stew-like dish. The essential ingredients are chili peppers and meat. Variations, either geographic or by personal preference may include tomatoes, onions, beans, and other ingredients. The name “chili con carne” is a slight corruption of the Spanish chile con carne, which means “chile (peppers) with meat”. Chili con carne is the official dish of the U.S. state of Texas.
Vegetarian chili
Vegetarian chili acquired wide popularity in the U.S. during the 1960s and 1970s with the rise of the vegetarian philosophy, and is also popular with those on a diet restricted in red meat. To make the chili vegetarian, the meat is left out of the recipe or replaced with a meat analogue, such as Textured vegetable protein or tofu. Some people consider vegetarian chili to be a spicy vegetable stew, and not authentic chili.

Wikipedia: Chili sin carne
Vegetarian chili (also known as chili sin carne, chili without meat, or chili) acquired wide popularity in the U.S. during the 1960s and 1970s with the rise of vegetarianism, and is also popular with those on a diet restricted in red meat.

Many variant recipes exist, and almost any available vegetable may be added, including corn, squash, mushrooms, potatoes, and even beets. (Corn, squash, and beans are known as the “Three Sisters” of Native American agriculture in the American Southwest.) A meat substitute, such as textured vegetable protein or tofu, may also be included.

Lone Star Vegetarian Network
The 2007 Vegetarian (Vegan!) Chili Cook-Off
Sunday, November 4th 2007, from 12:00 noon til 4:00 p.m.  at the
(10807 Rawhide Trail Austin - Please go to http://www.AustinZoo.org or call 512-288-1490 for directions)
This will be the
19th Annual
Lone Star Vegetarian Network Chili Cook-Off

Google Books
Mrs. Allen’s Book of Meat Subsitutes
by Ida Cogswell Bailey Allen
Boston, MA: Small, Maynard & Company
Pg. 53:
Meatless Chili Con Carne

20 February 1918, Columbus (OH) Enquirer-Sun, “Another Child of Mrs. Necessity—It’s Meatless Chili,” pg. 8:
Necessity, Mama of Invention, gives birth to meatless “Creole Chili” in Columbus.

Firm Roberts, rotund dispenser of newspapers, magazines, hot dogs, chili and confections, being of a patriotic disposition set his creative mind to working upon reading the new food law regarding the meatless and wheatless day and yesterday “Firm” let ye scnbe partake of some of the new chili sans meat and b’lieve us, it is good! This fact is corroberated by 98 others out of the first 100 customers served yesterday 98 said it was better than the regular chili.

Yesterday’s customers were so well pleased that Firm states he is going to serve his “Creole Chili” every day and discontinue the making of his old style chili.

Another thing, we report. Firm says that no living person except himself knows the ingredients used in this “Patriotic Creole Chili” and consequently he will be the only one in Columbus to serve “law-abiding chili” on meatless days. The chili is warranted to be pure, wholesome and refreshing.

As further proof of its “goodness” “Firm” ate some of it himself.

Frank U. Garrard has also placed his most “officious” stamp as food administrator of Muscogee county on it and states it is “alright.”

“Patriotic Victory, Liberty Creole Firm Roberts Chili,” and save meat.

24 February 1918, Columbus (OH) Enquirer-Sun, pg. 6:
Now, that they have invented “meatless chili,” when will breadless bread make its appearance?

15 February 1945, Athens (OH) Messenger, pg. 11, col. 1 ad:
Millers Vegetarian
Chili Con Carne
16 oz. 30c

8 October 1947, Gettysburg (PA) Times, pg. 5, col. 4:
Complete Line of Miller’s Health Foods
Vegetarian Chili Con Carne
16-oz. can 30c
(Milne’s Self Service—ed.)

4 December 1947, Kingsport (TN) News, pg. 4, col. 2:
Meatless chili: Cook slowly one medium, chopped onion, 1/2 chopped green pepper in three tablespoons vegetable oil until onion is light brown. Add one can kidney beans, or two cups dried kidney beans cooked, one can tomato soup and 1/2 cup cooked rice. Bake in greased casserole in moderate oven for 1/2 hour. 

7 February 1949, Van Nuys (CA) News, pg. 10, col. 3 ad:
Chili Sauce
10-oz. Can 15c

12 July 1951, Warren (PA) Times-Mirror, pg.16, cols. 3-4:
Chili Bean Bake
(4 generous servings)
Two tablespoons bacon fat, 3/4 cup finely diced onion, 1 teaspoon kitchen bouquet, 2 teaspoons flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, 8-ounce can tomato sauce, No. 2 can red kidney beans, 12-ounce can whole kernel corn.

Melt fat over moderate heat. Add onion and let cook about 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in kitchen bouquet. Add flour, salt and chili powder, mixing well. Add contents of can of tomato sauce. Bring to boil, stirring constantly. Add contents of cans of kidney beans and corn. Pour into individual casseroles and heat in moderately hot oven (375 deg. F.) until thoroughly hot, about 30 minutes. Serve garnished with a half strip of crisp bacon. Accompany with brown bread and crisp mixed salad.

12 February 1959 , Santa Fe (NM) New Mexican, pg. 12, col. 3:
Friday’s luncheon specials at El Conquistador, 229 W. San Francisco, will be meatless Chile Rellenos on the Mexican plate and French Fried Shrimp in American fare.

4 March 1958, Albuquerque (NM) Tribune, “Stuffed Green Chili Varies Lenten Menu,” pg. 8, col. 5:
Albuquerque cooks have a wider assortment of Lenten dishes than many other housewives around the country. With the Spanish and Mexican tradition here, the housewife has a chance to try some of the meatless chili dishes which are favorites in the Southwest.
1 cup raisins
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. sale
3 hard boiled eggs, cubed
1/4 lb. longhorn cheese, cubed
1 small onion
1 can green beans, chopped
5 cans (4 oz. size) whole green chili
6 uncooked eggs
1 pinch asafran

Fry onion. Add green beans, raisins, sugar, salt and cheese. Before removing from heat, add chopped boiled eggs.

Spread chili on bread board and add salt. Spread a scoop of flour on your hand. Place the chili over the flour, like a blanket. Put the stuffing in the center of the chili, and cover with another blanket of chili. Be sure stuffing does not show on edges. Pour more flour over second chili blanket and press together with palms of hand.

Egg Batter
Place on bread board until all are done.

Prepare a batter by beating 6 egg whites and adding the yolks.

Place stuffed chili in batter and fry until golden brown.

The prepared chili can be served with gravy made from light browned flour, water and spiced with asafran.

Serve with macaroni or mashed potatoes, an avocado and lettuce salad and bread pudding dessert.

Yield: about 6 servings. To make additional servings for freezing, double or triple the amount as necessary.

16 October 1958, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “Tasty Chili Prepared for Vegetarians,” section 6, pg. 6:
For vegetarians, a tasty chili can be made with canned vegetarian patties and seasonings.

Ingredients: One can (12 ounces) vegetarian patties, 1 can (No. 2) dark red kidney beans, 1 can (6 ounces) tomato puree, 1/2 cup chopped onions, 1/4 teaspoon barbecue seasoning (or chili powder), 1/2 teaspoon sugar, 1 teaspoon butter, salt to taste.
Method: Simmer onions in melted fat from can of vegetarian patties until tender. Add crumbled patties, tomato puree, paprika, barbecue seasoning, butter and sugar. Stir and simmer five minutes. Add kidney beans. Heat and thin with warm water to desired consistency. Add salt as desired. Serves four.

19 July 1961, Fresno (CA) Bee and Republican, “Chili Con Carne Makes Fine Patio Serving,” pg. B1, col. 1:
Meatless Chili Con Carne
3 strips bacon, diced
1 cup diced onion
1 cup chicken broth
1 envelope tomato soup mix
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon kitchen bouquet
1/2 cup diced green pepper
2 cans (1 pound 4 ounces each) kidney beans, undrained
2 cups packaged precooked rice

Cook bacon until crisp and remove bacon to use later. Cook onion in fat. Blend together and add chicken broth, soup mix, chili powder, and kitchen bouquet. Simmer 5 minutes, then add green pepper and beans. Cover and cook over low heat 25 minutes, stirring carefully every 10 minutes. Cook rice according to package directions. Serve chili con carne over hot rice in soup bowls. Sprinkle with crisp bacon and serve with spoon and fork.
Makes 6 servings.

5 February 1964, Southern Illinoisan, pg. 9, col. 3 ad:
4 CANS $1.00

21 December 1966, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “Tolbert’s Texas” by Frank X. Tolbert, section D, pg. 1:
Now the Joseph F. De Frates Co., styled “Chili Specialists,” have sent me a revolutionary development in the chili con carne field, one that may stir up bitter feelings in the Dallas-based Chili Appreciation Society International. This is vegetarian chili, called on the sample can which Mr. De Frates sent to me :Friday Chili.” (Mr. De Frates also cans beef chili, said by some Dallas chili head to be good, for canned chili.)

RIGHT NOW I’m getting up the nerve to try the vegetarian chili, and will make a report. It may be that I can get International Chief Chili Head George Haddaway to appoint a full committee from the society to test the vegetarian chili.

28 December 1969, San Antonio (TX) Express-News, pg. 12G, col. 4:
The main course was a miracle of vegetation. On the plate, presenting a profusion of color and an abundance of health were vegetarian chili, natural brown rice, spiced beets, yellow turnips, spinach “cooked five minutes"with boiled egg slices on top and brussel sprouts “equal in protein to beef, pound for pound.”

1 October 1972, San Antonio (TX) Light, “Galena Park Man Hot in Chili Day in Texas” by O’Lene Stone, pg. 6A, col. 5:
Mrs. Alberta Jackson, food service administrator at hays Memorial Hospital in San Marcos, offered “Vegetarian Chili” for the weak-hearted souls. The delicious dish tasted like it was full of beef, but the low cholesterol product was made completely from vegetables.

31 January 1973, Tucson (AZ) Daily Citizen, pg. 17, col. 5:
“I think meatless chili was the hardest thing to get used to at first, but now it tastes best to me.”

11 April 1973, Piqua (OH) Daily Call, pg. 4, cols. 6-7:
About one hour and 15 minutes before serving heat slightly 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a medium sauce pan. Add diced green pepper (1/2 large pepper), 2 medium onions, 2 thinly sliced stalks green celery, 1 thinly sliced clove garlic,and brown lightly. Add one 1 pound can drained kidney beans, 1/2 teaspoon chili powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt, one 1 pound can tomatoes. Bring to boil, simmer 80 minutes until thickened.

11 October 1975, Winnipeg (Manitoba, Canada) Free Press, Weekend Magazine, pg. 26, col. 2:
1 cup macaroni
2 tbsp. cooking oil
1 medium onion, chopped
14-oz. can tomatoes
19-oz. can kidney beans with liquid
2 tbsp. chili sauce
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup frozen mixed vegetables

Cook macaroni in plenty of boiling salted water just until tender, about 7 minutes. Drain. Rinse with hot water and drain again.
Heat oil in large skillet. Add onion and cook gently, stirring, until golden. Add all remaining ingredients except macaroni and frozen vegetables and cook over moderate heat, uncovered, 5 minutes. Add macaroni, cover and simmer 10 minutes or until most of the liquid is absorbed. Add frozen vegetables for last 5 minutes of cooking. (Serves 6.)
Note: Man and teenager get double servings.

22 November 1975, Kingsport (TN) Times-News, “Make a turkey happy! Have a meatless Thanksgiving,” Weekender, pg. 4, col. 2:
Vegetarian chili
4 T. olive oil
1 lg. onion, diced
4 c. stewed tomatoes
2 c. tomato sauce
4 c. kidney beans, cooked
2 med. green peppers, diced
chili powder, vegetable base, salt and pepper to taste
Saute onion and pepper in oil, add all other ingredients. Cook for 15 min. Serve over brown rice, sprinkle with raw diced onion.

26 June 1976, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “Health Food Places May Cure Junk Habit” by Patty Moore, section F, pg. 2:
For $4.45 one can sample such dishes as vegetarian Mexican or Italian dinners, which are not bad. The Mexican dinner (available on Tuesdays) features enchiladas covered with meatless chili, nachos made with mashed garbanzos instead of cheese, and a fairly good squash and tomato broth with snow peas.

26 September 1976, Fremont (CA) Argus, “Vegetarians enter state chili cook-off,” pg. 13, cols. 2-4:
ASPEN, Colo. (UPI)—Four vegetarians have entered Colorado’s chili cookoff, forcing puzzled officials to set up a separate category and get another non-carnivore to judge their concoction.

The winner of the chili cookoff, to be held today at an Aspen dude ranch, will be eligible to compete in the national chili cook-off Oct. 16 in Terlingua, Tex.

“All those entered are from Aspen,” Elise Fadden, one of the organizers, said Friday. “Four of them registered as vegetarians. I never had a vegetarian chili so I couldn’t tell you what’s in it.

“It’s mainly for the Aspen people because we have a lot of vegetarians up here. They don’t have a vegetarian category in the Terlingua cookoff.”

Miss Fadden said the cookoff was sanctioned by a group from Terlingua, led by Frank Tolbert, author of a history of Chili Con Carne.

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (0) Comments • Tuesday, November 13, 2007 • Permalink