Chili Con Carne

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My first attempt at this basic dish. Inspired by a book from my lovely husband called The Conscious Cook, by Giselle Wilkinson and the need to cook a carbohydrate rich dish with my Year 10 class, I had a go and also made some corn bread to go with it (the beans and the polenta in the cornbread are the carbohydrate rich ingredients). I tried two recipes of corn bread from Taste.com and the first was better … but both were a little grainy and crumbly. I think I might try doing it sometime after allowing the corn meal to soak for a while. If I do I will keep you posted!

Ingredients:
375g white beans (although you can use others, whatever you like/have in the pantry) that were soaked overnight*
2 tablespoons of oil for frying (Olive if you have it, I’m using grape seed oil at the moment)
800g kangaroo mince (beef works just fine, but Wilkinson suggests kangaroo because here in Australia ‘roo meat’ is much better for the environment than the growing of cows for meat)
2 large onions (I think I doubled the original recipe!)
2 large garlic cloves
4 cups chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
4 cups of stock (I used stock cubes)
2 chilli peppers (I think I used less than was called for)
1 tsp cayenne
1 tsp dried chili flakes
1/2 tsp sugar
2 tsp paprika
2 tsp cinnamon
Salt to taste
1 capsicum

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 180°C/160°C fan-forced.
2. Dice onion, crush garlic, chop chili and capsicum, measure out spices and stock.
3. Heat a little oil in fry pan (medium to high heat) and brown mince (medium heat). Take meat out of the fry pan (keep in casserole dish).
4. Add a little extra oil if needed. Sauté onion and garlic. Cook till soft.
5. Add tomatoes, tomatoes paste, stock, chilli, spices and sugar. Bring to the boil. Add meat and beans. Turn temperature down, cover and let simmer for 20 minutes. Add the capsicum half way through the simmering time.
6. Serve Chili con carne with lots of vegetables, a green salad and perhaps corn bread!

*Year 10 did theirs with tinned beans and this worked fine too.

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