Ultimate Student Recipe – Chilli Con Carne

Ask anyone who has ever been to, or is still currently at, university and chances are they’ll have a scurvy story. My tale of scurvy comes from my boyfriend, and how one plucky member of his football team (and by football I mean Frisbee team) blew his entire student loan in the course of two weeks. But how did he eat? I hear you cry.

Well he didn’t. Or at least, not real food.

Frisbee, I mean football, boy rationalised that all the basic food groups could be replaced with porridge. Just porridge. All day long porridge – all the time. And you know what happened to him?

He got scurvy.

This pirate used to be a Labrador until scurvy got him – eat your greens kids. 
Now whether or not my boyfriend’s story is reliable is up for debate. The old tale of student scurvy comes in many different shapes and forms. But it does happen. And quite frankly I resent the bad reputation these individuals give the rest of the student population.

So to avoid anymore pirate associated conditions, here is my number one student recipe: Chilli Con Carne. Yes it’s an over done recipe. Yes everyone thinks their’s is the best.

But everyone needs one, and hell, why not this one?

It’s a dream of a student recipe. It’s filled with vegetables, got a nice piece of steak in there, and can last you nearly a week if you make enough of it. Or at the very least two nights of weed induced midnight munchies.

What You’ll Need:

A Slow cooker – I stole mine off an Ex boyfriend (it was a present from his Gran).  

  • Braising steak – Morrisons do the best cut, you want a nice marbled, fatty piece, and dice it.
  • Garlic – 4 or 5 cloves chopped
  • 1 big onion chopped
  • Chillies – fresh or dried, or both.
  • 1 red pepper chopped.
  • 1 can of chopped tomatoes
  • A cup full of chicken stock, that oxo cube stuff will be fine.
  •  Spices – Cumin, paprika, oregano, cinnamon, coriander
  • Kidney Beans
  • Sweet corn (optional)

The Recipe:

1. Season your meat (not a euphemism) and let it brown in a searing hot pan. Once sealed, chuck it in the slow cooker.

2. In the pan you used for your meat, toss in all your vegetables (garlic and chillies included) and let them sweat in the beef juices (again, not a euphemism). Once sweated for 5-10 minutes, chuck them in the slow cooker.

3. Add your tomatoes and stock to the slow cooker.

4. Mix in your spices. The longer you’re leaving it to cook for, the more spices you need. Just make sure you only use, at most, 1 tsp of cinnamon. The rest you can go mental with until it tastes right.

5. Add kidney beans.

6. Let that bad boy now cook for as long as possible. For 4 hours use the high setting. For 5 or more hours, set it down on low. Personally I like to make it within 4 hours on one day, then once I’ve had one serving for my dinner, I leave it cooking on low until I have again the next day. The beauty with a chilli is, the longer you leave it, the better it tastes – within reason, of course. Don’t leave it sitting out for over a week, otherwise scurvy will be the least of your worries.

7. Once left for a decided length of time, serve it up with either rice, couscous, in a burrito, on nachos, or smothered on your lovers chest.


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