smoky three-bean and lentil chilli


This is a tweak on an old favourite that I realised my son could enjoy at a young age. It's a perfect supper bowl that is full of cold-fighting vitamins and minerals. Serve with some fluffy brown basmati rice or, as my husband does, lots of mashed potato.

Serves 4 people

2 tbsp olive oil
1 large red onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
1 celery stick, finely chopped
1 red pepper, deseeded and diced
1 tsp sweet smoked paprika
tsp chipotle paste
3 x 400g tins of plum tomatoes
200ml chicken or vegetable stock
A few sprigs of coriander
110g puy lentils
1 x 400g tin of red kidney beans, drained
I x 400g tin of black beans, rinsed and drained
1 x 400g tin of pinto beans, rinsed and drained
3 tbsp tomato puree
A dollop of coconut yoghurt, to garnish
1 red chilli, chopped (optional)

Heat the olive oil in a large pan or casserole over a medium heat. Fry the onion and garlic for a couple of minutes before adding the rest of the chopped vegetables. Stir in the paprika and chipotle paste and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften.

Add the tomatoes and break them up a bit with the back of a wooden spoon. Add most of the stock, using it to rinse the tomato tins, to get the last of the juices out. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 45 minutes.

Tear the stalks from the coriander and add with the lentils and rinsed beans and bring to the boil. Season with salt and black pepper and simmer for another 30 minutes. Add the tomato purée, and another dash of stock if the chilli looks dry, then continue to simmer for 30 minutes.

Divide between bowls and enjoy either as is, or with rice and a dollop of yoghurt on the side. Scatter with snipped coriander leaves and fresh chilli, if you like.

The chilli will keep in the fridge for up to a week and also freezes really well.