Friday, 26 June 2015

Mixed Bean Chilli Crumble recipe

I have made Mixed Bean Chilli lots of times before and usually serve it
Mixed bean chilli crumble
with plain boiled or steamed rice. I fancied doing something a bit different this time though and had mooted the idea of it in a pie with a shortcrust pastry topping. As I reached for the flour I thought a crumble might work better and remembered that we had parmesan cheese flakes in the fridge. Cheese always goes well with chilli so I made a cheesy crumble topping that went perfectly with the spicy beans.

Splash of olive oil
1/2 onion, finely sliced
2 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper or chilli powder
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tbsp tomato puree
400g tin chopped tomatoes
400g tin mixed beans
50ml red wine
Salt and pepper

100g plain flour
50g butter
50g porridge oats
25g strong cheese, flaked or grated

Heat a splash of olive oil in a saucepan and add the onion. Cook until softened but not browned.

Stir in the spices and the tomato puree. We're using up a jar of cayenne pepper at the moment but chilli powder will work just as well obviously! Dave doesn't like much spice heat so I only put in a tiny bit - feel free to add more depending on your personal taste. Be aware that double cooking condenses the strength though!

Stir in the chopped tomatoes and the mixed beans. I used a tin containing six different varieties which looked good in the crumble. Swirl the wine in the tomato tin to rinse tomato off the sides, then pour the wine into the saucepan too.

Stir to combine, cover and simmer gently for about half an hour. Simmer, uncovered, for another half hour. You want to mature the sauce flavours but without turning all the beans to mush. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking. The crumble does absorb quite a lot of liquid from the chilli so I found it best to stop cooking when the bean mixture was still more liquid than I would normally like.

While the beans are cooking, make up the crumble topping.

Rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Either white or wholemeal will be fine - wholemeal would give a nuttier flavour and might need a little extra butter.

Stir in the oats and cheese until evenly combined. I had dried parmesan flakes in the fridge. Grating a mature cheddar would be tasty, but I'm not sure how a blue cheese would work. This is a great way to use up ends of cheese that might be drying out or past their best.

Spoon the chilli mixture into an ovenproof dish, then scatter the crumble over the top. I like to have about twice as much filling to crumble. Don't be tempted to press the topping down - it won't 'crumble' if you do!

Bake at 200c until the crumble turns golden and you can hear the filling bubbling underneath.

Serve hot.

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