one pot chilli
For an inexpensive, warming supper it’s hard to go past a good chilli. If you’re feeding vegetable-phobics, it’s a good opportunity to sneak some extras in. Just finely grate the veg rather than chop so they are easier to disguise..
125g (4oz) vegetables, diced
125g (4oz) ground protein
1/2 can tomatoes
1/4 – 1/2 can beans
1/2 – 1 teaspoon chilli flakes or powder
1. Heat a few glugs of oil in a saucepan. Cook veg on a medium heat for about 5 minutes or until softened.
2. Add protein and increase the heat to high. Cook, stirring to break up any lumps for about 5 minutes or until the protein is no longer pink.
3. Add tomatoes, beans and chilli. Simmer gently for at least 15 minutes or for 30-40 minutes if you have time. You’re looking for the sauce to reduce a little and for the flavours to combine.
4. Taste and season, adding a little more chilli if it needs it
vegetables – onions would probably be my first choice. But also consider zucchini, carrots, celery, red capsicum (bell peppers), sweet potato, pumpkin (winter squash).
ground protein – I’ve used ground beef but buffalo, lamb, pork, veal, chicken or turkey could all be used. For vegetarians use cooked or canned green or brown lentils. If using cooked red lentils add them at the end so they don’t overcook in the sauce.
beans – red kidney beans are traditional but feel free to mix it up with cannellini, black beans, borlotti beans, adzuki, butter beans or even chickpeas. Feel free to use home cooked beans instead (1can drained is about 250g or 1/2 lb).
canned tomato alternatives – water, chicken stock, vegetable stock, tomato puree.
chilli – I like dried chilli flakes but powdered chilli is good. Experiment with different varieties of chilli. For a milder chilli try using ancho chillies.
Brilliant! Reheats really well. And one of those dishes that improves with age. Also freezes well.
problem solving guide
too hot – chilli varies quite a bit in heat levels. Next time add less. But for now, stir in a little olive oil for richness or serve with natural yoghurt.
too watery – simmer for a little longer to help the sauce reduce down.
too bland? add in a little more salt and pepper. Or some tomato paste.
Lovely with a green salad on the side. Or some fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves for some greenery. Parsley is good too.
You could serve with bread, tortillas, rice or cauliflower rice to soak up the sauce. Also consider serving sour cream or natural yoghurt to cool any inflamed taste buds. A little extra chilli on the side is good for any hot heads.