Saturday, 9 November 2013

Cooking Diaries: Chilli con carne and rice for the student on a budget

Image by cyclonebill

Hello! Baawo! Ndewo! Hola! Aloha! Salut! Shalom! Guten tag!
You know, I've been really enjoying all the recipes from the "student on a budget series" like Spaghetti Bolognese and Shepherd's pie. Its been a great way for me to enjoy quality without having to break the bank. I can use the money saved towards other things like buying gifts for myself and my family for Christmas.Speaking of Christmas, has anyone made a shopping list? I certainly have, it mostly consists of books I've been wanting to get on Amazon and some cool Jewellery. I've already started buying things for the "fam", because you never know who is going home for Christmas and when the person will be going. Anyway, I digress. I made something really delicious and easy this week. I made Mexican chilli con carne with rice(First it was Italian, then Irish, now Mexican; I feel like my mouth is making international trips!). This recipe is probably the easiest one I've made so far in terms of technicality so I'll keep my explanations short and sweet. The ingredients include:

450g beef mince
1onion, peeled and chopped
100g mushrooms, chopped
1 tin kidney beans
1 beef stock cube(Knorr)
1 tin chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons chilli powder
225ml water
125ml red wine - reduced to half by boiling
salt and pepper
200g rice(50g/portion)

 -Fry the mince in a pan until it has all browned, then add the chopped onions, mushrooms and chilli powder and continue cooking for approximately 5 minutes, then add the other ingredients and simmer for 25-30 minutes season with salt and pepper to taste.
-Meanwhile cook rice in boiling water for 10-20(depending on the type).

This was the first time I'd ever tried Mexican food, I'd always wanted to try it back in Nigeria but there weren't very many Mexican restaurants and it didn't seem like a very popular cuisine in the Lagos scene. I must say I loved it, Mexican chilli is definitely something I'll be trying again(next week maybe?) because I have some left over ingredients. Its so delicious and spicy, I made mine especially hot but you can minimise the hotness by putting 1 tablespoon chilli powder instead of 2 and even removing the bell pepper from your recipe. Its easily customisable to your preference. Enjoy!

Cooking Diaries: Shepherd's pie for the student on a budget

Image by cyclonebill

Hello! Baawo! Ndewo! Hola! Aloha! Salut! Shalom! Guten tag!
Its been a minute hasn't it? I recently got some feedback from a friend who enjoyed the blog post on Spagetti Bolognese and promised to try it(I'll definitely hold him to that promise). That positive feedback gave me the courage to try out another recipe and share it on the blog. This time, it was the British/Irish staple, Shepherd's pie. Initially I was bit sceptical, because of the idea of baking mashed potatoes(I didn't think I'd find baked potatoes delicious) but I turned out great! Here's how I made mine, starting with the ingredients used(Recipe for 4 portions):

450g beef mince
1 onion, chopped
150g mushrooms
200g salad mix or
100g carrots(chopped) and 100g peas(cooked)
4 tablespoons tomato ketchup
4/5 large potatoes

The Process?

- First, fry off the mince in a pan then add all other ingredients and place in an oven-proof dish.

grease the oven proof dish with butter

- Peel the potatoes and dice them.

- Cook the diced potatoes in salted boiling water for 20 minutes and mash them up with a little butter and skimmed milk.

- Place the mashed potatoes on top of the cooked mince.

- Bake at 180 degrees Fahrenheit for approx 30-35 minutes until lightly browned on top and around the edges.

garnished with a dollop of mayonnaise

You can serve with other vegetables of your choice, probably a vegetable salad? I loved eating it just as is but if you feel like having an accompaniment, it might as well be something healthy like vegetable salad. Enjoy!

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