As part of my challenge to myself to have two weeks waste-free and minimal spending on groceries (see here!) I’ve been making recipes that use up whatever I have in the kitchen and this was one of those recipes. I LOVE using my slow cooker – especially on busy weeks like the one I’ve had this week as it means I can just throw it all in before starting work and by the time everyone is home there is a tasty and filling hot meal ready to serve up. Unfortunately my slow cooker seems to be on its way out (randomly turns itself off which can be pretty annoying!) so that’s another thing to add to my list of stuff we need to save up for AND our bloody steamer died this month too – not a great start to 2017 ha!
So far this week I have bought: milk, Greek yoghurt, green beans, avocados, smoked salmon, bacon lardons, cream and eggs – spending a grand total of £10.56 in Lidl – i’d have spent less if Lily hadn’t been insistent on a pasta carbonara night (it’s her favourite meal!) and if Scott hadn’t decided he was going to start training again this week (hence the salmon and avocados)
Anyway – slow cooker veggie chilli… an old work friend recommended I make one as his family love it. I have to admit I’ve cooked plenty of chilli con carne in our slow cooker but I’d never tried a vegetarian option and I was a little nervous about it – turns out there was no need to be as it went down a storm with the whole family *even the fussy 7 year old ate it*
In the spirit of using up what we have I used a sweet potato and a green pepper that were needing to be eaten – I just chopped them both into chunks
Tin of chopped tomatoes
Tin of kidney beans
Tin of borlotti beans
1 mug (I just used a tea mug) of red lentils
I added all of these to the slow cooker, mixed it well, then used the tin tomatoes can to top up with water until it was *just* covering the top of everything. The spice mix we had was mild so I added some extra smoked paprika, cayenne pepper and garlic to give it an extra kick as we like our chilli spicy!
Pop the slow cooker (crockpot) on low for 6-8 hours, if you can check it half way through and add a bit more water if it seems dry.
And that’s it! Easiest dinner ever! I serve Lily’s and mine up with a dollop of Greek yoghurt to take the edge off of the spices and top mine and Scott’s with avocado slices and crushed black pepper. You could serve it with rice if you wanted to make it go further but the recipe above made a pretty BIG batch – it’s done two lunches and three dinners so far and I have a big tub of it leftover which I’m going to freeze in individual portion sizes to help us through next week of the challenge!