The list of ingredients here may look long and daunting but I promise you, the recipe is very simple – a one-pot wonder. This recipe was kindly given to me by a great chef – Bruno Loubet – who worked with me for many years. Risking Bruno’s wrath, I made a few changes to the recipe. I hope he will forgive my boldness and see the wisdom of an older man.
For the toasted spices
- 1½ tsp ground coriander
- 1½ tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp sweet smoked paprika
For the vegetable base
- 125 g (4½ oz) onion (about ½), cut into chunks
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 125 g (4½ oz) celery, cut into 3 cm (1¼ in chunks
- 70 g (2½ oz) fennel, cut into 3 cm (1¼ in chunks
- 1 large carrot, cut into 3 cm (1¼in chunks
- 375 g (13 oz) button mushrooms
- 1 red chilli
- 12 g (½ oz) fresh ginger, finely grated or sliced
- 1 red capsicum, cut into large dice
- 100 ml (3½ fl oz) rapeseed oil
- large pinch of sea salt
For the rice
- 100 g (3½ oz) flageolet beans
- 260 g (9½ oz) brown basmati rice (see Note)
- 1 bay leaf
To finish the chilli
- 100 g (3½ oz) tomato purée (passata)
- 200 g (7 oz) piquillo peppers
- 400 g tin chopped tomatoes
- 240 g tin red kidney beans (drained weight)
- 100 g (3½ oz) brown sauce (see Note)
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 40 g (1½ oz) chocolate (100% cocoa solids), finely grated
- 10 g coriander leaves, roughly chopped
- salt and freshly ground black pepper, for seasoning
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
For the toasted spices, in a dry frying pan over a low–medium heat, cook all of the spices for 1 minute, taking care to ensure you don’t burn them (you just want to extract the essential oils). Set aside.
For the vegetable base, add the onion, garlic, celery, fennel, carrot, mushrooms, chilli, ginger and capsicum to a food processor. Pulse in 3-second bursts for 30 seconds, until you have 2-3 mm dice. This may need to be done in batches depending on the capacity of your food processor.
Heat the oil in a large saucepan on medium heat and gently fry the vegetables, toasted spices, and a large pinch of salt for 10 minutes.
For the rice, in a separate large saucepan over high heat, bring 550 ml (1 pint) water to the boil and cook the flageolet beans for 10 minutes on a full boil until just tender. Lift the beans from the pan using a slotted spoon but keep the cooking liquid on the heat as you will use it to cook the rice. Reserve the beans.
To finish the chilli, add the tomato purée, piquillo peppers and tinned tomato and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the kidney beans, cooked flageolet beans, brown and Worcestershire sauces and leave to cook for a further 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook the brown rice in the flageolet bean cooking liquid with the bay leaf and simmer for 15-20 minutes, covered with a lid. Depending on the variety of rice, it may take a few more minutes. Once cooked, drain off any excess liquid and transfer to serving dishes.
To finish, stir in the grated chocolate. Taste and season with salt and pepper as required. Serve the chilli with the chopped coriander and brown rice alongside.
• Brown basmati rice will have more fibre and flavour than white.
• Brown sauce is a condiment that is commonly used in the UK. It can be found at supermarkets and specialty stores.