My favourite vegetarian chilli recipe

This recipe is one of the very few I cook on a regular basis. I’m one of those cooks who 70 per cent of the time is cooking a new recipe. I am never satisfied that I’ve found the best butter cake recipe, or the best bolognese. I mean, my butter cake and bolognese are pretty good, but the best? I can’t commit to that!

However, I’m pretty confident this is the best vegetarian chilli bean recipe I’ll ever come across. I love it for its simplicity, pantry-dominated ingredient list, and, most importantly, its ability to gain compliments from vegos and meat eaters alike.

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I estimate I’ve made this recipe no fewer than 100 times, and most of the time I will vary the ingredients slightly. I might add some extra veggies if I have some in the fridge, or swap mexi-beans for kidney beans or cannellini beans or chickpeas. I think the essential parts of the recipe are the combination of spices and the rich tomato base. Everything else is a matter of personal preference, or ingredient availability.

I will post my original recipe here, but you will note in the pictures I added mushrooms, cherry tomatoes and celery to this particular cook-up, and served my chilli with toasted wholemeal pita crisps and natural yoghurt. I usually serve my vego chilli with rice and sour cream (or natural yoghurt when I’m being a good girl), but LL loves it most with grated cheese, sour cream and avocado in tortillas. It also goes without saying it is perfect for tacos, nachos, burritos, even as a pizza topping. It is freezer friendly, keeps for the better part of a week in the fridge, and tastes frickin’ amazing. Had I not mentioned that? Continue reading

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Easy dinner: Chicken, avocado and mushroom pasta

So, despite the name of this blog, I actually don’t eat baked goods for breakfast, lunch and dinner. One of my favourite other things to cook is pasta. Creamy pastas, pesto pastas, tomato-based pastas, you name it, I’ll cook it. The only thing that doesn’t fly is when people add sweet chilli sauce to pasta (i.e., my boyfriend!) That’s just not happening in my kitchen. I’m a purist. Sue me.

On the menu today is my slightly healthier chicken, avocado and mushroom pasta. I’ve modified a Taste recipe because when I saw the kilojoules per serve I had a mini heart attack. And I’m not one to shy away from calorie-laden meals!

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Spicy sweet potato and lentil soup

spicy sweet potato and lentil soup

Brrr! It’s getting wintry here in old Oz and I am craving comfort (high calorie) foods like pastas, pies and potato-laden soups. I’ve been whipping up a few minestrones and vegetable soups and stashing them in the freezer for a super easy lunch when I’m running out the door on my way to work. This particular recipe is a mish mash of my favourite spicy lentil soup and a sweet potato soup that I just love. The pic doesn’t make it look particularly amazing, but hopefully you’ll give it a go and let me know what you think.

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Can’t-go-wrong cannelloni

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Allow me to add the 10 trillionth recipe for spinach and ricotta cannelloni to the internets. I wouldn’t bother if I didn’t think my cannelloni was worthy. It’s a popular dish that everyone seems to have their own version of – like bolognese or fried rice. My version takes no shortcuts – you make the tomato sauce, no pre-packaged fillings and if I’m in the mood, fresh homemade pasta. If not, I’m happy enough with store-bought fresh pasta sheets.

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