“Economy Gastronomy” – Chilli, chilli and more chilli!
Inspired by a tv show of this name, I’m really in to the idea of cooking big dishes that you can use for several different meals and/or freeze as a stand by for lazy days. A good chilli is one of these dishes. I will usually buy a large portion of mince if its on offer and either make one big portion of chilli out of it, or portion it up and freeze some for other mince dishes (Bobotie is a particular favourite but that’s one for later….)
So, for the basic chilli…
These amounts are approximate, depending on how much you want and you can alter the liquid:meat ratio depending on how much sauce you want – bare in mind the sauce will thicken on standing/freezing.
1-2 cans of chopped tomatoes
1 small can/packet of tomato paste
A little red wine
2 cloves of garlic
A liberal sprinkle of cayenne pepper and paprika
A sprinkle of any italian herbs (Basil, marjoram, oregano etc)
Lots of pepper
1 can of kidney beans (can also use other canned pulses to bulk out the chilli if you want, or swap for the mince if going vegetarian).
Chop onion and garlic and fry in a little olive oil.
Add the mince to the pan and brown.
Once mince is browned add the red wine, reduce slightly then add the tomatoes and tomato paste.
Add herbs, spices and seasonings and simmer for 10 minutes.
Just before serving add kidney beans/other tinned pulses.
Will taste even better the next day or freeze and use for any of the suggested dishes below….
Chilli and potato bake
Simply defrost the chilli into a casserole dish and top with part boiled potato slices. Grate some cheese (cheddar and parmesan are the best) and place in the oven on a medium-high heat until the potatoes are soft and the cheese is melted.
Chilli and wedges
Similar to the above but you can make the wedges nice and crispy if you prefer the texture.
Half cook some large potatoes in the microwave and cut into wedges.
Take a shallow bowl/plate and mix herbs of your choice (italian/spicy) with olive oil and coat each wedge in this mix.
Place on a baking tray in the over on a medium high heat until crispy.
Serve with chilli, guacamole and maybe even a little sour cream and parmesan cheese.
Throughly defrost the chilli.
Make/buy some short crust pastry – the ready rolled stuff is best in the name of simple, lazy food.
Roll the pastry out – but not too thin and cut into circles of desired size.
Fill with chilli and seal the edges.
Brush the pastry with a little egg wash if desired and cook according to pastry instructions.
Dietary note: All good for my coeliac friends with this one – other than the pasties – but why not try a gluten free pastry – it is possible to make, I will try and find one of my old recipes for this.
More of these dishes to come soon…