When he was small, my youngest son had a habit of filling his pockets with treasures he encountered in his daily adventures. I didn't always understand the value he saw in his chosen objects -- really, how many rocks and sticks could one boy keep? In his eyes, though, each one was beautiful and important. Life is just like that on a larger scale, isn't it? We gather up the precious bits of our experiences and save them all to learn from and enjoy later. Perhaps you'll find a little something here that you'd like to keep in your own pockets. Thanks for visiting.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Comfort Food: Chili and Tea Biscuits (gluten-free, dairy-free)

March appears to be coming in more like a lion than a lamb this year, so in our house we're still warding off winter chills with warm comfort foods for dinner.  I've always loved the ease of preparing a big pot of chili in the afternoon to enjoy with my family in the evening.  The chili fills the house with its delicious aroma as it simmers away on the stove, and a steaming bowl of this hearty, healthy concoction of foods makes a very satisfying meal.

When I was growing up, my mom would often bake homemade tea biscuits when she was making chili for dinner.  Those biscuits, served warm right out of the oven, were oh so good that I can still remember how much I loved them, even though I haven't had them for years.  Today I decided to try baking an almond flour version of the biscuits to go along with some homemade chili I was having for lunch. I'm so glad I thought of biscuits today -- these tasty almond flour ones really hit the spot!


1 lb lean ground beef  (or turkey)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, diced
half of a large red pepper, diced
half of a large yellow pepper, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
6 cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 large carrot, finely grated
1 large clove of garlic, minced
1 540mL can of red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 540mL can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 796mL can of diced tomatoes
half of a 796mL can of crushed tomatoes
sea salt, pepper, chili powder, and dried parsley, to taste

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium high heat.  Add the ground beef, breaking it up with a spoon, and cook until the beef is browned.  

Add the onion, red and yellow pepper, celery, mushrooms, carrot, and garlic to the pot.  Cook until the vegetables have softened, stirring often.

Stir in the kidney beans and chickpeas, then add the diced and crushed tomatoes.  Bring the mixture to a low boil, stirring occasionally to ensure all ingredients are well combined.  Season the chili with sea salt, pepper, chili powder, and dried parsley, to your liking. 

Reduce the heat to low, and simmer the chili for several hours, stirring occasionally.  Serve hot.

Tea Biscuits

3 cups blanched almond flour
2 tbsp arrowroot flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
5 tbsp warm water
1 tbsp raw honey

Preheat the oven to 350 F.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the almond flour, arrowroot flour, baking powder, and sea salt.

Whisk together the water and honey in a separate small bowl, then add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients.  Stir well until a nice dough consistency is reached.

Sprinkle a little almond flour on your work surface, and turn the dough out onto it.  Use your hands to lightly flatten the dough to about a one-and-a-half inch thickness.  Using a circular biscuit cutter, press out rounds of dough and place them on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Bake the biscuits in the preheated oven for approximately 20 minutes, or until they are a lovely golden brown colour on the top and bottom.  Serve warm. 

These tea biscuits are delicious eaten just the way they are alongside a bowl of chili, or you can spread them with a little coconut oil if you prefer.  (I think they would also make a really nice snack on their own if you added a dollop of fruit spread on top.)

I can't deny that we're all wishing for milder weather here soon, but we'll make the most of the cold days that linger on by enjoying a few last rounds of winter's most comforting dishes. 

I hope you're all finding happy ways to keep cozy and warm, too!


  1. Looks nice! I'll definitely have to try it out - especially those biscuits! And this is such a nice meal for a winters day :)

    1. Thanks Michelle -- I'm glad you stopped by to visit! :)