This chilli beef ticks all the right boxes for me. It’s a proper winter warmer, pretty much all cooked in one pot. The beef is slow cooked so it practically falls apart in your mouth and is flavoured with delicious cumin, chilli, cinnamon and oregano. It’s topped off with crispy, spicy potato wedges. Oh and it’s got melted cheese on top too. Really, what’s not to like?
It’s the first dish I’ve tried from the Higgidy Cookbook and I’m now looking forward to working my way through the rest of the book. The lamb shank pie is another I’ve got my eye on.
Chilli beef pie with spicy potato wedges
2 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp dried chilli flakes
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp dried oregano
750g braising beef, cut into chunks
3 tbsp olive oil
2 onions, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 small bunch fresh coriander, leaves and stalks separated and chopped
2 green chillies, chopped
2 tbsp tomato puree
400ml beef stock
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp black treacle
1 red pepper, deseeded and diced
1 x 400g tin black beans, drained and rinsed
salt and pepper
For the wedges
4 large baking potatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
good pinch of smoked paprika
large handful of grated Cheddar cheese
Preheat the oven to 180°C / gas mark 4.
Crush the cumin seeds and chilli flakes in a pestle and mortar and then pour into a large bowl. Stir in the cinnamon, oregano and 1 teaspoonful of salt. Add the chunks of beef and toss well to completely coat the meat.
Place your casserole dish over a medium heat and add a tablespoonful of the oil. Brown the beef all over in batches. Don’t let the spices burn or they will turn bitter. Put the browned meat in a bowl.
Pour a little water into the pan, scrape the bottom with a wooden spoon to loosen all those lovely tasty bits, and then pour this over the beef.
In the same pan, heat the rest of the oil and then gently fry the onion, garlic, coriander stalks (reserve the leaves) and chillies until soft. Add the puree, stock, tomatoes and hot stock, and give it all a good stir. Cook for a minute or two.
Add the beef and bring to the boil. When the stew comes to the boil, remove from the heat and cover tightly with the lid. Cook in the oven for two hours.
Add the pepper and black beans, stir well, season with salt and pepper to taste, and then return to the oven with the lid back on for another 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir in the coriander leaves. Keep to one side with the lid on to keep warm.
Increase the oven to 200°C / gas mark 6.
Cut the potatoes into chunky wedges and boil in salted water for around 8 minutes until just tender. Drain well and put into a roasting tin. Drizzle with the oil and sprinkle with paprika and salt and bake for half an hour until crisp and golden.
Preheat the grill to medium-high.
Scatter the wedges over the top of the stew, top with grated cheese and pop it under the grill until the cheese has melted.
Serve with soured cream. Enjoy!
As this stew-slash-pie features my favourite chilli, I’m entering it into The Spice Trail challenge, which has chilli as this month’s theme.
And as this pie-slash-stew is cooked almost entirely in one pot, I’m entering it into the Four Season’s Food challenge, hosted by Eat Your Veg and Delicieux, where the theme this month is Soups, Stews & One Pot Wonders. If you’re looking for more winter-warmers, head over there for some great inspiration.