This is a really simple recipe and tastes great. I cannot vouch for its authenticity; however, I can tell you I got this recipe from someone who is Mexican on her father’s side, and it was her grandmother that taught it to her.
I am sure the original recipe would have involved everything being made from scratch, but the version I was taught has a little short cut. I have absolutely no problem with cheating when it comes to cooking and nor should you!
Starting what I think may become a theme, I have decided my first recipe should be my signature Chilli. I make no claims about authenticity, however I do know it’s extremely tasty.
Serves: 4 (generously).
- 1kg of minced beef
- 3 medium sized onions
- 2 bell peppers
- 1 Scotch Bonnet
- 3 large cloves of garlic
- 2 tins of chopped or peeled tomato
- 1 tin of kidney beans
- 1lt cafetiere of coffee
- Cumin (Jeera) powder
- Hot Chocolate powder
- 3tsp of Demerara Sugar
- 2 mugs full of rice
Fry the mince with no oil
There are two things to note at this point: this recipe contains no oil and it does not use any salt. The salt I recommend people can add to taste once served, and the fat from the beef is used for frying the veg.
Put the minced beef in a large-bottomed pan. This should be fried on a medium heat until it has just about turned entirely brown. This should be stirred periodically to get it evenly fried all over and to make sure you do not burn the beef.
Here’s a great one I came up with over the weekend, it’s named Punk Pie as I used Brewdog Punk IPA, but really any IPA will work in the recipe. You’ll need the following (and a couple of hours)
For the pastry -
- 350g of plain flour
- 200g of butter (or anything suitable for baking, as you can see I used Vitalite)
- 1 egg
- 1 egg to glaze
For the filling -
- 2 good sized onions, red or white will do
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1 (325ml) bottle of Punk IPA, or the IPA of your choice
- 1.5 chicken stock cubes, or enough to make roughly 635ml of stock, more or less to taste
- 800g chicken thighs and legs
- A few handfuls of frozen peas
- 4 or so carrots
- A couple of tbsp of flour for thickening
- 200ml of water
- A pinch of sugar (to taste)
- A couple of pinches of tarragon
- A few handfuls of grated cheese
You’ll also need a mixing bowl, a casserole dish or oven proof pan (with a lid) and a 30cm pie dish
The National Winter Ales Festival is a beer festival I know well. Having been going for the last 7 years and also volunteered at a number of them. This year was the largest yet: over 300 beers! I am very much a fan of hoppy beers, particularly the aromatic hops, but I can appreciate good dark and old ales as well, and seeing as this is the Winter Ales Festival there was an emphasis on these darker beer types.
There is always an issue which I have at beer festival, and I’ve named it (as I am a nerd) the “signal to noise ratio”. This simply means the number of good beers there are compared to the number of poor beers. This year I felt this ratio was very low. There were a couple of times I thought I’d go for beers from breweries which I’d never heard of, and almost instantaneously regretted it. I can’t remember who these breweries were as their beers were really not that memorable. So I ended up being unsurprised by which beers I thought were good as even if I hadn’t had the beer before, I knew the breweries. I thought I’d make a list of the particular highlights for me and beers to look out for in the future:
Quantum – Stella IPA (5.5% ABV): Now, it is rare you get to go to a beer festival and order a “Stella”, so I thoroughly enjoyed this opportunity to ask for it. This beer tastes nothing like the namesake, and the beer is actually named after the hop strain which is used in this Single Hop IPA. I’m a big fan of IPAs and this was incredibly tasty, aromatic and fruity but not overly intense. Very drinkable even for the strength.
Red Willow – Wreckless (4.6% ABV): This award winning strong bitter was one which I’ve had before, and very easy to drink. It is perfectly balanced in the hops and malt it uses and creates a nice quaffable beer. I could have drank this all night.
Magic Rock Co. – High Wire (5.5% ABV): This is an American style Pale Ale and incredibly hop forward. This is a beer I’ve had before but only on keg (under pressure and dispensed from a tap rather than a pump). It’s very nice on keg, but as with everything I’ve tried yet, I much preferred it on cask. Unfortunately the beer was slightly hazy at the festival, so the condition wasn’t great, but it still tasted fantastic. I think it would have been even better if it had cleared properly.
If you were at the beer festival, please feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.