Yesterday it seemed like the beginning of autumn and I needed to eat some comfort food to cheer me up. I often make vegi chilli but this time I thought I’d make a carnivorous (or “non-vegetarian” as they say in India) version. If you want to make the vegetarian version, omit the minced beef and the beef stock cube; add more vegetables and use vegetarian stock powder. This quantity will feed four:
- 2 tbsp cooking oil
- 1 large onion (chopped)
- 2 cloves of garlic (chopped)
- Chillies (chopped – I used two small red ones (including the seeds) – you need to taste the mixture while cooking to make sure you get the heat you want)
- Large pinch of oregano
- 400g minced beef
- 1 large green pepper (cut into 2.5cm x 1cm (approx) strips)
- 1 large courgette (cut similarly to to the pepper)
- 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
- Water (about 1.5 ‘tins’ (the tin which contained the chopped tomatoes))
- 1/2 a beef stock cube
- 400g tin of red kidney beans (drained)
- 1 ripe avocado
- Juice of half a lime (or similar amount of lemon juice)
- black pepper to taste
- Sour cream or creme fraiche
- Grated cheddar
Heat the cooking oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion, garlic, chillies and oregano. Mix the ingredients well, turn down the heat and stir frequently over a lowish heat for about five minutes.
Raise the heat and add the minced beef. Stir (and turn) the mixture rapidly until the meat has browned.
Add the green pepper and courgette and stir for about 2 minutes.
Add the chopped tomatoes, the water and the stock cube, and give the mixture a stir. Bring to the boil and simmer for about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, to make the guacamole cut the avocado in half and remove the stone. Remove the flesh from the shell and mash with a fork, together with the lime juice and black pepper, in a bowl. Cover the bowl and put aside. Coarsely grate enough cheddar to sprinkle over four portions of chilli.
After 30 minutes, add the red kidney beans and taste (if the mixture isn’t spicy enough at a few chilli flakes).
Serve with boiled rice (or tortillas/tacos) together sour cream (or creme fraiche) and guacamole, and the grated cheddar.