A quick and easy recipe for you today, something that’s become a staple with me over this winter as its warming and comforting without taking hours to cook. I love stews and casseroles, but they aren’t exactly convenient when I leave the house at half 8 and get back at half 6, even with a slow cooker. This takes about 20 minutes from start to finish (less if you have an electric chopped, but then there’s more to wash up…) and I’d like to say it’s relatively healthy.
The best thing about this recipe is that its cheap. As long as your spice cupboard isn’t totally bare (at a minimum you should have cumin, chilli powder, salt and pepper) and you aren’t allergic to tomatoes it shouldn’t cost you much at all!
Now a point about beans. I buy dried beans (with the exception of kidney beans) all the time as they are ridiculously cheap, and I use a lot of them. Generally I cook them in my slow cooker every once in a while and freeze in portions – to do this just add to slow cooker, top with twice and much water and cook on low for 5-7 hours, keeping an eye on the water level. If you don’t eat beans often, I would use a can of mixed beans here.
My favourite combination of beans is predominately black beans (thanks to Wahaca I am addicted to these!), with some pinto beans. I’ll then add a small can of kidney beans too. On the tomato free front – I use Wahaca’s smoky chipotle sauce in my chillis, and don’t miss the tomatoes at all – its definitely the best ‘substitute’ I’ve found for this kind of dish!
- 1 small onion
- 1/2 pepper
- Beans (see above, or use a can of mixed beans like this one)
- Spices – I use 1/2 teaspoon of cumin, 1/4 teaspoon chilli powder, a sprinkle of coriander and cinnamon, and some garlic powder
- Tomato Puree (or chipotle sauce for tomato-avoiders like me!)
- Vegetable Stock
Start by dicing the onion. I prefer my onion pretty small and well cooked, so I start to fry in a little oil before doing anything else.
Then slice up the pepper, and add to the pan. Fry for a few minutes, then add the spices.
Add the spices, and fry whilst stirring all the time, before squeezing in your tomato paste. If you are making this tomato free, add some chipotle sauce when you add the stock.
Add the beans and around a mugful of vegetable stock, then simmer. Just simmer until it gets to the consistency you want – thick or thin. I found I only needed 5-10 minutes on a very low heat.
Serve with rice, or if you are really lazy (like me) with tortilla chips and a little grated cheese.
What’s your favourite vegetarian recipe? Let me know if you want me to provide rough costs of my recipes!