, , , , , ,

Home, home on the range….

I’m a huge chilli fan, it’s the most perfect winter warmer and a real comfort food for me, especially when the weather is so bitterly cold. This always goes down a storm whenever I make it. The smoky chipotle chillies combined with coffee and the slow-cooked beef that literally melts in your mouth are a hit with friends and family alike. A dear friend of mine from the States, street performer Derek McAlister, gave me his guacamole recipe one Edinburgh Festival and I serve it whenever I make this chilli. It’s completely delish!


2.5 lbs of stewing steak
1 red onion – roughly chopped
1 red pepper – roughly chopped
2 cloves of garlic – crushed
4 inches of chorizo – roughly chopped
1 red chilli – finely chopped
1 dried chipotle chilli – finely chopped
1 tin of red kidney beans
1 tin of black beans
2 tins of chopped tomatoes
small handful of sweet smoked paprika
1 tbsp of chipotle Tabasco
1 squirt of tomato purée
1 glass of red wine
1 tea cup of strong black coffee
olive oil
salt & pepper

Derek’s Guacamole

4 avocados smashed with the juice of 1/2 lime, salt & pepper
half a jalapeno chilli – diced
2 tomatoes – diced & seasoned
half a white onion finely chopped (I substitute the white for red as I prefer the sweetness of the red – sorry Derek!!)
half a cup (small bunch) coriander – finely chopped

Serves 4

Preheat the oven to 150 degrees.

Soften the onion, red pepper, garlic, chorizo, chipotles and red chilli in the olive oil over a medium heat. Once soft, add the beef to brown.
Once the beef is browned, add the paprika, the kidney and black beans, the chopped tomatoes, a squirt of tomato purée, the red wine, the coffee and the Tabasco.
Season liberally and pop in the oven for 2.5 – 3 hours, or until the beef is falling apart. You can, of course, adjust the seasonings depending on your personal taste. Don’t let the chilli dry out, do give it a stir now and then and chuck in some water if it looks a little dry.

For Derek’s Guac – mix the avocados with the lime juice, salt & pepper first. Then add each ingredient separately and mix well. Taste often and make sure there is enough salt and lime flavour coming through. Pop in a bowl, cover and chill until you eat. Enjoy!

Serve the chilli with some sour cream, long grain rice, some crusty bread and a healthy serving of guacamole.


Other things you can add:

A sprinkling of grated mature cheddar
A spoonful of tomato salsa (I cheat and use the fresh one from Sainsburys, you can find it in the chiller cabinet with the hummus and other dips)
Sweetcorn drizzled with lime juice,
A side of refried beans
Tortilla chips


Love Lili