[RECIPE] Twisted Sisters Chili From Lori Skelton

Serves 8 to 10

Photo: Lori Skelton


  • 2 C. frozen corn kernels
  • 2 t. vegetable oil
  • 3-pound pie pumpkin or other orange-fleshed squash (butternut, Red Kuri, Golden Hubbard)
  • 1/2 C. unsalted butter
  • 1/2 C. olive oil
  • 1/2 C. finely ground cornmeal
  • 1 (7 oz.) can chiles in adobo
  • 2 poblano peppers, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced, or 2-3 t. garlic powder
  • 2 T. tomato paste
  • 4 C. veggie broth
  • 1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 2 15 oz. cans black beans, drained but not rinsed
  • 2-3 T. medium chili powder
  • 2 t. ground cumin
  • 2 t. cinnamon
  • ½ t. ground allspice
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 2 10 oz. bags frozen peaches
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2-3 T. balsamic vinegar
  • Chopped green onions, pepitas, shredded cheddar cheese, and sour cream, to serve


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1. Thaw corn, then toss with vegetable oil. Spread on a baking sheet and broil for 5-10 minutes until brown and sweet. Set aside.

2. Peel the pumpkin or squash and cut into 1-inch pieces (You may need to slice pumpkin in half and microwave each half for a few minutes before you peel it). If the pieces are irregular and slightly larger, that’s fine, but don’t go for smaller pieces in an attempt to be uniform.

3. In a large Dutch oven or soup pot (6-8 quarts), heat the butter and olive oil over medium heat. When butter has melted, whisk in the cornmeal until smooth, then dump in can of chiles and adobo. Stir for one minute, breaking up chiles with spoon, then add pumpkin, poblanos, onion, garlic, and tomato paste. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 10 minutes.

4. Add the broth, diced tomatoes and beans. Stir in the chili powder, cinnamon, cumin, and allspice, gently stir in bay leaves. Bring back to a simmer then reduce heat, cover, and cook for an hour, or until the pumpkin is tender, but not mushy. Add corn and peaches, simmer 30 minutes to an hour more. The peaches should be soft, but should still maintain shape and texture.


This is a chili that REALLY benefits from having at least 12 hours to sit and let the flavors develop off heat. Gently reheat before serving.

Before serving, taste and season with salt, pepper, and balsamic vinegar. Offer chopped green onions, pepitas, shredded cheddar cheese, and sour cream, to top per individual taste.

Recipe Credit: Lori Skelton, inspired by Faith Durand’s Pumpkin Chili at thekitchn.com

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