This is embarrassingly simple. Really, one hardly needs a recipe for it. One does, however, need quesadillas to go with it. And maybe some sour cream on top.
Mild enough to be palatable to even the weeniest eater... meatless enough to delight any vegan (at least 'til you put the sour cream on top)... flexible enough to absorb any sort of beans or tomato products you have on hand with a single "gloomp"... it's a soup, it's a stew, it's Late-Night Salsa Chili!
Late-Night Salsa Chili
Serves four, easily doubled (not so easily halved, but I'm sure leftovers would be a delish next-day lunch)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped fairly fine
1 Tbsp ancho chile powder (or regular chili powder, but then you'll probably need to adjust the other seasonings a bit)
1 tsp cumin--optional but recommended
1/2 tsp salt
1 medium zucchini, halved (or quartered) and thinly sliced
1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
2 15-ounce cans beans of your choice--I used one can chili beans, undrained, and one can cannellini, drained, 'cause that's what we had sitting around, but black beans would def. have been better than cannellini from an aesthetic standpoint
1 to 1-1/2 cups salsa, your choice of texture/ingredients/heat level--I used half and half thin tomato salsa and salsa verde, 'cause we had those sorts sitting around in the fridge waiting to be used up--use more if you use only drained beans, less if you use all undrained--you're smart, figure it out yourself
Chopped cilantro, shredded cheese, and/or sour cream, for garnish
Heat the olive oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add onion, chile powder and cumin; cook, stirring frequently, for about 3 minutes. Add zucchini and salt; cook, stirring frequently, about 3 minutes more. Add garlic; cook, stirring without ceasing, 1 more minute.
Add tomatoes, beans and salsa. Bring to a simmer; simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until chili is sufficiently thick and you've finished readying whatever you're serving with it (quesadillas, remember?). Ten or 15 minutes should do it.
Garnish as you like and serve it forth.