And now, by popular demand and at enormous expense, that age-old favourite – the Eighth Day Chilli. This is another recipe that has been reinvented more times than anyone can remember. The original was full of brown lentils and called ‘Chilli con Beano’ This present version misses out the lentils and some of the more anti-social side effects!


1 Tin (410g) Red Kidney Beans
2 Fresh Chillies (this will make it medium hot, depending on the chilli)
3 Cloves of Garlic
2 small Onions
2 teaspoons Cumin Seed
1½ teaspoons Basil
1 teaspoon Oregano
1 large Green Pepper
1 large Red Pepper
4oz Mushrooms
1 large Carrot
1 Tin (410g) Plum Tomatoes
1½ tablespoons Tomato Purée
2 tablespoons Sunflower Oil
200ml Water


  1. First chop up the onions and set to one side, then heat up 1 tablespoon of the sunflower oil in a heavy bottomed pan until it is smoking and throw in the cumin seed. Cover immediately and turn down the heat. After a couple of seconds the initial explosion of popping seeds will have died down, add the chopped onion and the herbs and stir to mix thoroughly.
  2. Wash and dice the carrot, peel if not organic, and add to the pan with the water. Bring to a simmer, cover and allow to cook until the carrot and onion begin to soften.
  3. Next liquidise the garlic and the chillies in the other teaspoon of oil and then add to the pan.
  4. Meanwhile chop the peppers and, if they need it, the mushrooms, add them to the pan when the carrots begin to soften.
  5. Finally liquidise the tomatoes and add to the pan with the purée, stir it all up well, and allow to cook, covered, until all the vegetables have softened and the flavours melded. Isn’t melded a lovely word? Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. If you have any fresh corn on the cob handy, put it in at the carrot stage, it only adds to the experience.
  7. One of our colleagues once launched into a great song of praise to his love of chilli, “I just love chilli, it is the greatest meal in the world. Baked potato and chilli, oh and with cottage cheese on top, fantastic. Best meal in the world.” Long thoughtful pause, “I wonder if I just like baked potato and cottage cheese” Whether he did or not, chilli baked spud and cottage cheese is a great combination.

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