Chilli Con Carne Pie
This is a great recipe for cold winter nights, it is easy to make and very filling, it feeds four – six adults depending on the size of your appetites, but you can scale it up if you have a large enough dish, I use a 2 litre Pyrex dish for this recipe.
400g of best minced beef *
2 or 3 large carrots grated**
1 tin cheap chopped tomatoes (shop’s own brand will do)
1 tin cheap kidney beans (shop’s on own brand will do)
1 onion finely chopped
Some hot chilli sauce or tabasco or similar
Worcester sauce (optional)
2 tablespoons of gravy powder or granules
1 Kilo of potatoes peeled and sliced.
First we make the Chilli, of course if you could make this from left over chilli if you want.
Put the grated carrots and the chopped onion in a frying pan with a little oil and gently fry until the onions have softened, then add the mince and continue to fry gently until the mince has browned.
Now add your seasonings, a few dashes of Worcester sauce if you use it and the chilli sauce to taste. Drain and rinse the Kidney beans and add these along with the chopped tomatoes. Continue to cook while you boil you potatoes for mashing. During the cooking I usually test the heat of the Chilli and add more Tabasco or some ground chilli if it is not hot enough for my taste.
Once the potatoes are cooked, drain them off thoroughly as you want a stiff mash for this dish and then mash them with a little butter or marg if you can spare it. (If the mash is a bit wet simply return the pan to the heat while you mash it to evaporate off some of the water).
Because we don’t want the chilli to be too wet for this dish I usually thicken the chill with a little beef gravy powder at this stage (this also brings out the flavour of the meat) and then transfer the chilli to the Pyrex dish.
Now I add my mash potato to the top and it is ready to go into the oven 190 degrees C or gas mark 4, or if you prefer put it under the grill, until the mash has browned on the top.
I usually serve this dish with peas and carrots or broccoli and sweet corn, but you can serve it with whatever vegetables you want. If you want to serve it with gravy this is fine too, why not add a few drops of Tabasco or chilli sauce to the gravy for an extra kick.
Serve and enjoy.
* I find that cheap mince is a false economy you end up with a lot of fatty liquid which you have to drain off and the meat that you are left with is significantly less than you started with, so go for the better mince and use less of it.
** I use grated carrots in my chilli for three reasons, firstly they make the meat go further, secondly they subtly add to the flavour of the dish and thirdly they are one of you five a day.