Make chili beans: Heat oil in a 10-inch cast iron or ovenproof skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Cook the onion and bell pepper for 5 minutes, stirring regularly, until softened. Wilt the kale in 2–3 minutes.
Add garlic and sauté 30 seconds more until fragrant. Mix in tomato paste, chili powder, oregano, and salt. Stir in beans and water. Simmer for 2 minutes, mashing the beans gently.
You can add cayenne pepper depending on your chili powder's heat. Remove from heat, taste, and add salt if needed. Use a spoon to smooth the bean mixture's top.
Mix cornmeal, pastry flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium basin to make the cornbread topping. Mix the milk, egg, oil, and honey or agave in another medium bowl.
Mix the flour and milk just until mixed. Rest the batter for 5 minutes to thicken and hydrate. Spread the batter evenly over the beans with a spatula.
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Bake until the topping sets in the center and is gently browned, 16–20 minutes. Rest 5–10 minutes.
Top shallow bowls or plates with yogurt or sour cream, cilantro, and spicy sauce to serve.