Weekly Photo Challenge: From Above (Two)

Taking a leaf out of The Palladian Traveler’s Blog, I thought I’d show one of my favourite meals from above, namely my Muttar Paneer Special (which means I’ve added red peppers to a Muttar Panneer recipe to add some contrasting colour!)…

Muttar Paneer Special


Martin’s Vegetarian Chilli

Serves 3-4 as a main course with either Rice, Tacho Shells or Wraps.   45 Minutes to 1 Hour preparation and cooking time.   Suitable for Vegetarians.

Ingredients: –

  • 1 Onion
  • 2 cloves of Garlic
  • 1 Chilli
  • 2 Carrots
  • 1 stick of Celery
  • 1 tsp Marjoram
  • 1 tsp of Oregano
  • 1 tsp of Sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp of Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 tsp of fresh Ginger
  • Balsamic Vinegar to taste
  • 1x 400g Tin Kidney Beans
  • 1x 400g Tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 1x 350g pack of Quorn Mince or equivalent.
  • Tomato Purée
  • Sunflower oil
  • Vegetable Oxo Cubes
  • Salt to taste

Method: –

Chop the Onion, Garlic, Ginger and Chilli finely.   Scrape the Carrots to remove the outside skin and split in half before slicing finely.   Chop the Celery finely.   (If you don’t want the Chilli to be too hot, remove the seeds whilst chopping.)

Heat the Sunflower oil in a pan and add the Onion, Garlic, Carrots, Marjoram, Oregano, Cayenne Pepper and Sesame Seeds.

When the Onion has softened, add the Quorn Mince and fry for 5mins.   Add around 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar (adjust to taste) and stir in thoroughly.

Add the chopped Chilli and Ginger along with the Celery and stir in, then add a tablespoon of Tomato Purée and once again stir in ensuring a good mix of the ingredients.  Allow to fry for 5mins.

Wash the tinned Kidney Beans to remove the muddy residue from them.

Add the tinned tomatoes to the pan followed by the Kidney Beans and stir thoroughly.   Check how fluid the mixture is and add a quantity of vegetable stock created from the Oxo cubes and hot water to achieve your preferred consistency.

Allow the mixture to simmer over a medium heat for 15-20 minutes – add salt if required.

Some plain yoghurt and/or grated cheese may be provided on the side if required.   Peas may be added at the same time as the Kidney Beans to increase the quantity of or to add variety to the dish.

Martin’s Double Bean Soup

A quick and easy thick soup, suitable for evening meals – especially after standing on a cold terrace at football matches in the winter.   Preparation and cooking time – 30mins Approx.   Suitable for Vegetarians.   Serves 3-4.

Ingredients: –

  • 1 x 400g tin of Butter Beans*
  • 1 x 400g tin of Kidney Beans
  • 1 x 400g tin of Chopped Tomatoes
  • 1 medium size Onion
  • 1 – 2 cloves of Garlic
  • 1 Chilli
  • 1 tsp Ginger*
  • 1 – 2 tsp Italian Herbs
  • 1 tbsp Tomato Puree
  • Olive Oil*
  • ½ Pint of Vegetable Stock
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Bread of your choice

Cooking Method: –

Thinly slice the Onion and Garlic.   Slice the Chilli, removing the seeds if preferred.   If using fresh Ginger, remove the skin and grate finely – I normally use the ready prepared Bart’s Spices Ginger.

Warm some Virgin Olive Oil in a medium saucepan and add in the Italian Herbs, Garlic, Ginger and Chilli.   Stir to mix well and once the Garlic has softened, add in the Onions.  Stir again and leave to simmer gently.   If using homemade vegetable stock, warm it now in a separate saucepan – otherwise, see below.

Wash the Butter Beans and Kidney Beans in a colander to get rid of the brine.   Add these to the saucepan and stir briefly.   Add in the Tomato Puree and stir again.   Add the Chopped Tomatoes and stir.

If using Oxo stock cubes, boil the water and crumble 3 cubes into a measuring jug.  Pour in the water to make ½ Pint of stock.   Add your stock to the saucepan and stir.   Simmer for 10mins.

Add Balsamic Vinegar to taste.   Stir thoroughly and simmer for a further 10mins.   Note – there is no need to add salt as there is an adequate quantity in the stock.

Serve in soup bowls with a bread of your choice as an accompaniment.   If preferred, drizzle some Extra Virgin Olive Oil onto the soup once in the bowl.

*Alternative ingredients – Barlotti Beans for Butter Beans, Mustard Seeds for Ginger and Sunflower Oil for Virgin Olive Oil.   A knob of Butter can be added after adding the beans to make the soup creamier if desired.