Wednesday 7 April 2010

Recipe - Mince, Carrot, Tomato and Chickpea Soup

Here we go again. Too tired to be adventurous and too stubborn to buy a takeaway. This is the kind of dinner I cobble together when I'm in that frame of mind.

Yet again I used up various bits and pieces that I already had in the cupboards or the fridge to make up something that was edible and filling. As always, freestyle it to your liking. For example - I'm sure the chickpeas can be exchanged for some other kind of pulses, or why not some leftover boiled rice?

If you have some leftover fresh herbs hiding in the fridge, chopping up some parsley and stirring it in just before serving would be a great finishing touch. I added a tbsp of tomato puree and some hot sauce but that is optional if you don't want the extra flavour and kick added by those.

This might not look like the most exciting dinner of the season but it is tasty and fills you up well. Add to that the fact that it is quick to cook and I could not have asked for a better dinner last night.

The final touch, if I had remembered to get some, would have been some nice crusty bread to dip in the soup.

No use to cry over forgotten bread though, here's the recipe...

Ingredients (makes 4 or so servings)
Vegetable oil
400g beef mince
1 onion - peeled, quartered and thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves - peeled and sliced very thinly
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 carrot - peeled and coarsely grated
1 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
400 ml water
Hot sauce (optional)
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 410g tin of chickpeas in water - drained and rinsed

Heat the oil in a large pan on a medium heat. Add the mince, onion, garlic, ground cumin and smoked paprika. Cook whilst stirring now and then until the mince is well browned.

Add the carrot, tomatoes, water tomato puree and hot sauce. Give it all a couple of good stirs and bring to a boil.

Once boiling, add the chickpeas and lower the heat to a simmer. Simmer for about 5 minutes. Season to taste.

Serve with crusty bread.