Chunky Chilli


Hello lovely readers, do you think I’m crazy? Because my Chunky Chilli is made in the midst of Summer! And I understand, I had a moment with myself before going ahead and making this anyway. Trust me it’s good, even on the most scorching of days.

FF Chunky Chilli


So here’s the thing – I try, on most days to get our evening meal made in the morning. Yet my body, frustratingly disruptive and painful that it is, does not, can not, start chopping and stirring at 5pm when dinner used to be made. Usually around 3 o’clock in the afternoon, very often well before that time, I’m done in and need to lay down. Consequently, any task that takes more than a couple of minutes standing just ain’t gonna happen!

While I’m learning to adapt (see Adapting to a New Normal) I made this Chunky Chilli. Most importantly, it was bubbling away, on the hob, by 10am. And the malted loaf was baked and cooling by 11am. Result!

How I now approach cooking:

I simply love cooking, yes there are more days than I’d like, where I can’t. Yet on the days I can, I do. Sometimes I  double up on the recipe, so  I can stash a meal in the freezer. Although that comes with it’s own challenges; more time standing, chopping, slicing, stirring etc. So I  do what I can and at the end of the day, whatever sort of day it’s been I look at what I’ve achieved. And it keeps me positive and (not literally) on my toes, constantly thinking of new ways of getting dinner on the table.

Also, I am actively teaching all three of our children to cook. In fact, my heart swelled the other day, when I found a printed copy of my Crunchy Homemade Coleslaw recipe. Our eldest daughter had made it to go with dinner and it was perfect!

Chunky Chilli - a delicious make ahead meal.
Chunky Chilli – a delicious make ahead meal.


So, let me show you how I make Chunky Chilli!

Recipe : Chunky Chilli Serves 6

450g/1lb Minced/Ground Beef

1 Large Spanish Onion – cut into small dice

1tbsp Olive Oil – I use Filippo Berio

1-2 Red Chilli’s – or more if you really like it hot

4 Garlic Cloves – minced

1tsp Ground Cumin

4 x 400g/14oz Cans of Plum Tomatoes

2 x 400g/14oz Cans of Kidney Beans

3 Red/Green Bell Peppers – cut into large chunky dice

1tsp Corn Flour

Salt and Ground Black Pepper to taste

Making the Chunky Chilli

  • First of all add the oil to a large, heavy based pan, over a medium heat.
  • Next add the onion and cook until just soft and slightly translucent.

Add the minced beef to the pan.

  • Tip the minced/ground beef into the pan and cook until browned.

Cook the beef until it is browned.

  • Add the finely diced chilli and tinned tomatoes.

Next add the finely diced red chilli.


Chunky Chilli - time to add all the tinned tomatoes.


  • Rinse each tomato can out with a little water and add this to the pan.
Chunky Chilli - add the minced, or crushed garlic and the ground Cumin.
Chunky Chilli
  • Now add the cumin and garlic.
  • And use a wooden spoon or spatula to gently break up the plum tomatoes. During cooking they will break down further.
  • Empty the kidney beans into a big sieve and rinse under cold, running water.
  • Add the rinsed kidney beans to the pan.


Chunky Chilli - tip the kidney beans into the pan.
Chunky Chilli
  • Allow the chilli to bubble gently for 2 hours partially covered with a lid.
  • I prepared this Chunky Chilli in the morning. After 2 hours cooking the heat was turned off.
  • Check the seasoning and adjust as necessary.
Chunky Chilli - called so because of the Chunky diced 2 green and 1 red peppers!
Chunky Chilli – so called because of the Chunky diced 2 green and 1 red peppers!
  • Then add the diced bell peppers, the chilli will be reheated later. Alternatively if you make this chilli ready to eat, add the peppers during the last 10 minutes of cooking time. Ensuring the peppers retain their crunch.
  • Dissolve the corn flour in a couple of tablespoons of cold water and add to the chilli.
Chunky Chilli - add the corn flour mix to the hot chilli, at the same time as the peppers.
Chunky Chilli
  • Give the chilli a good stir and allow the corn flour to thicken the sauce. Finally pop a lid on the pan and leave to cool until needed.
Chunky Chilli - reheat over a medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring until piping hot all the way through.
Chunky Chilli –

I like to serve this Chunky Chilli in a bowl with a generous dollop of plain yoghurt, tortilla chips or a thick slice of hearty, homemade bread and a little sprinkle of grated sharp cheddar.

Chunky Chilli - served my way!
Chunky Chilli

If you have enjoyed this recipe for Chunky Chilli you may also like these:

Healthy Turkey Mixed Pepper Chilli 

FF Chunky Chilli
Healthy Turkey Mixed Pepper Chilli

Hearty Minestrone Soup

FF Chunky Chilli
Hearty Minestrone Soup

Spicy Sausage Bean Casserole 

FF Chunky Chilli
Spicy Sausage Bean Casserole

Making this hearty, warming and economical meal is an easy way to feed the family.. Likewise they can all be easily scaled up if you need to feed a crowd. Also adding some crusty bread, such as my Seeded Cob Loaf or Easy Homemade Cottage Loaf not only makes this meal go further, they are perfect for dunking in spicy juices! Resulting in a delicious feast for all to share.

Sammie xx

No part of this post may be reproduced or duplicated without the written permission of the owner. Please see my Disclosure Policy.


Turkey And Leek Pie


Hello, thank you for stopping by to take a look at my recipe for Turkey and Leek Pie, topped with mountains of mashed potato. Because, this is a fantastic recipe for using up leftover Turkey after Christmas or Thanksgiving. Alternatively you could use cooked chicken such as my Lemon Thyme Roast Chicken.

Turkey And Leek Pie


Waste Not, Want Not:

Since the news if filled with statistics and reports of how much food we throw away and waste as a nation, creating recipes using up leftovers is a priority for me. While I am not suggesting you try to make a pie out of the gooey apple, fermenting at the bottom of the fruit bowl, there are ways that we can use up leftovers. And, as many of us eat turkey over the Christmas period and roast chicken throughout the rest of the year, there can be leftover meat. So, having delicious, easy recipes that use up leftovers, makes both practical and economical sense.

While we had a delicious, roasted turkey crown for Sunday dinner yesterday, I was left with a complete, cooked turkey breast. Although I enjoy cold turkey and chutney sandwiches, my aim was to create a meal out of the leftovers.

So, today I decided to make this turkey and leek pie, topped with creamy mashed potatoes. Alternative toppings for this pie could include; sliced potatoes, flaky pastry, savoury crumble topping, herbed breadcrumbs. If you do try any of these suggestions, please let me know how you get on?

Recipe : Turkey and Leek Pie serves 6

1 1/2 – 2 lb  (750g/1Kg) Cooked Turkey  – or chicken, cut into 1 inch/2.5cm chunks note: if the turkey or chicken has been frozen AFTER cooking the pie cannot be re-frozen

2  Medium Leeks

100g/4 oz  Butter (split in two)

1 tbsp  Olive Oil

2 tbsp  Vermouth or White Wine – use Martini Extra Dry

1 tbsp  Plain White Flour – *alternatively to make this gluten free add 1tbsp cornflour mixed with 2tbsp water after adding the milk to the sautéed leeks.

1/2 of a Chicken/Vegetable Stock Cube – I use Knorr

6tbsp  Whole Milk – alternatively you can use double cream (heavy cream)

1.5 Kg/3.5lb Peeled Potatoes (Maris Piper/Desiree or any floury potato suitable for mashing)

2  Sprigs Fresh Thyme

Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Method :

Preparing the mashed potato topping:

  • First of all peel and chop the potatoes, place in a saucepan and cover with water.
  • Add a pinch of salt, bring to the boil and then simmer until tender when pierced with a knife.
  • Drain the potatoes, place them back into the saucepan with 2 tbsp of butter and a splash (3tbsp) of milk. Clamp on the lid and leave off the heat for 5 minutes.
  • Next, adding a good grinding of black pepper, mash the potatoes, set aside to cool.

Creating the pie filling:

  • Chop the leeks into small dice, rinse thoroughly and pat dry with a clean kitchen towel.
  • Place 2 tablespoons of butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil into a frying pan over a medium heat.
  • As soon as the butter melts add the leek to the pan.

Bright green, uncooked leeks. They fill the pan!!

  • Add a pinch of salt and sauté over a low heat until they become soft and slightly translucent.

The sautéed leeks have lost their bright colour and shrunk in the pan as they've cooked!

  • Next add 1 tablespoon of flour, stirring so the chopped leeks are covered in the flour. Continue to cook for a couple of minutes. *see recipe for gluten free option.

The flour mixes with the butter and oil to thicken the sauce once the liquid has been added.

  • Add a splash of Vermouth or white wine. Mix thoroughly over a low heat, cooking for a couple of minutes.
  • Next add 3-4 tablespoons of milk and stir continuously.

The sauce will have a very thin consistency. Keep stirring!!!

  • The sauce will still be thin at this stage. Continue stirring. After a few minutes the sauce will thicken.

After a couple of minutes the sauce will thicken.

  • Crumble in half of a chicken stock cube. Alternatively dissolve the stock cube in a couple of tablespoons of hot water, then add to the pan.
  • As soon as the stock is incorporated have a quick taste and season to taste.
  • Strip 2 fresh Thyme sprigs and add the leaves to the sauce.
  • Set to one side and allow to cool.
  • Cut the cold, cooked turkey (or chicken) into 1 inch chunks and place into a pie dish. Cover with the cold leek sauce.

Turkey chunks covered in leek sauce, flecked with Thyme leaves.

  • Spoon the mashed potatoes around the outside edge of the pie, working towards the centre.
  • Using a fork, ensure the mash seals the pie around the edge to stop any sauce leaking out during baking. Likewise ensure the potato topping covers the pie evenly with no gaps.
  • Drag the fork across the surface of the mashed potato. As doing so will ensure an extra crunchy topping once baked.

Ensuring the mash reaches the edges of the pie dish will help stop the sauce from leaking out during cooking.

Storing, baking and serving the pie

  • At this stage the Turkey and Leek Pie can be wrapped in cling film and placed in the fridge for a couple of days until needed.
  • Alternatively, double wrap in cling and popinto the freezer for up to one month – defrost overnight in the fridge before reheating.
  • To bake the pie, preheat the oven to 190C/170C fan, 350F, gas mark 4.
  • Place the pie dish on to a baking sheet and place  in the middle of the oven.
  • Bake for 1 hour until bubbling around the sides, golden and crunchy on top and piping hot all the way through.

The ultimate comfort food. I like to serve this turkey and leek pie with steamed savoy cabbage.

If you have enjoyed this recipe for Turkey And Leek Pie you may also like these:

Steak Leek And Ale Pie

FF Turkey And Leek Pie
Steak Leek And Ale Pie

Quiche Lorraine 

FF Turkey And Leek Pie
Quiche Lorraine – a great way to use up gammon, ham and bacon.

Roast Chicken Noodle Soup

FF Turkey And Leek Pie
Roast Chicken Noodle Soup

When I am creating a meal using leftovers, it gives me an extra buzz. Because not only am I reducing waste, an entirely new dish is being made. Especially over the holiday period, when large joints of meat are cooked there can be a temptation to simply bin any leftovers. Whereas having a few, simple recipes on hand can actually make it easy and fun preparing meals.

So, whatever you are making, baking and creating in your kitchens, have fun preparing and sharing your feast.

Sammie xx

No part of this post may be reproduced or duplicated without the written permission of the owner. Please see my Disclosure Policy.