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Off to a chilli start

While time wasting spending valuable time on Twitter recently I responded to a call out for bloggers to take part in a Meat Free March recipe swap. The meat free bit was easy – being virtually vegan and always keen to try new dishes – so I put my virtual hand up. I then realised to be a blogger I would have to have a blog – and this was the prompt I needed to set up Virtually Vegan, an idea I have been plotting and procrastinating about for some time.

So a huge thank you to Fay at Food Fables and Bits and Bobs Becs for this kick start into the world of foodie blogging and to my recipe swapper, blogger Susie who the made the rest of this first post possible!

I always get excited when something other than bills and junk mail arrive in the post so tore into the well wrapped parcel that arrived. Inside there was a postcard of Birmingham, a handwritten card with a recipe and two intriguing ingredients – Caribbean Hot Pepper Sauce and a bar of dark Lindt Blueberry Intense chocolate .  This could be a recipe swap match made in heaven I thought – then even more heavenly I found out that Susie had included the chocolate not for the recipe but just because, as she wrote, ‘well why not?!’

VVblog suace and choc

The recipe Susie sent me was Mexican Refried Bean Chilli (from Fat Free Vegan Kitchen). The ingredients are:

1 chopped onion

3 cloves garlic

1 chopped pepper

Chopped jalepenos

250mls veggie stock

1 can chopped tomatoes

1 can refried beans

400g cooked black beans

Handful chopped mushrooms

Handful sweetcorn

1 tsp cumin

2 tsp paprika

Add to taste: chilli powder, hot sauce, salt and pepper

To serve: fresh coriander, guacamole, tortillas

I love spicy food and also as I tend not to weigh things or stick strictly to instructions, I liked that this was a recipe that could be adapted to suit different tastes. I also liked the fact it not only sounded spice-alicious but also very easy to make!  My kind of cooking. To make it was simple:

Fry onions in a large pan and when soft add the garlic, peppers and jalapenos

Add all spices and fry until fragrant

Add all other ingredients. Bring to boil, then simmer for about 20-30 mins until thick.

That’s it! While it was simmering I also made the guacamole from the Hairy Bikers recipe Susie recommended and torillas which are oh-so-simple to make (flour, dairy free margarine,  hot water – mix into a dough, roll thin and cook in a dry frying pan)VVblog Chilli

I made this for three of us – one (me) being vegan, one vegetarian, and one meat eater. It got a big thumbs up from us all including, from the meat eater, whose praise said it all ‘I really didn’t miss not having meat. It doesn’t need it at all.’

It also made loads – we finished it off the next day with a little more sauce added, and it was perhaps even tastier as the spices had had time to really infuse through.

I loved this dish because it’s so simple but really tasty, quick to make and used ingredients that I can usually find in my kitchen. It’s on my list of top meals I know I’ll be making regularly.

Susie also included another recipe for coconut cupcakes… so that’s another post for another day.  As for the blueberry dark chocolate… every virtual vegan needs a sweet treat!

VVblog Brum

Birmingham – home of Cadbury, the Balti and my recipe swap buddy

3 Responses to “Off to a chilli start”

  1. Amy says:

    I love chilli! It’s my go to when I’m entertaining as it’s so simple but so delicious – a definite crowd pleaser! It’s nice to have a recipe which anyone, no matter what their dietary preferences, could have go on! I’m a sucker for kidney bean though – can’t have a chilli without a kidney bean in my eyes! Great first post 🙂 xx

  2. admin says:

    Thanks Amy – yep I did think next time I’d add more different beans to it! Good to meet you! X

  3. Susie says:

    I’m really glad you enjoyed it!! It looks lovely! Congrats on getting started on your blog, I’m glad I could help you on your way! Now maybe I need to be inspired to write more on mine!

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