So it’s 2014 soon and we sat down and did the budget… eek! Looking at some money saving tips, one was to make batches of food and freeze them. I realised the only reason we ever get takeaway is because I can’t be bothered to cook, so yesterday I made a massive batch of spicy bean soup and froze it in tupperware, as a standby for a quick, healthy, cheap meal to bung in the microwave. This is one of those dishes I made using whatever we had in the cupboards, and lots of lovely spices. It takes a couple of hours to cook for all the flavours to come out but you just add all your stuff to one pan and leave to simmer, so it’s rather easy. It’s a bit hot so use less spices if you wish, but I love a good hot soup on a cold day. And in Liverpool in December, it really is cold!
You will need a tin of chopped tomatoes, 400g chickpeas (if you are using dried ones make sure they have soaked for at least 4 hours), an onion, 1 tin of mixed beans (I used one with cannellini beans, adzuki beans and flagolet beans), 4 carrots, 1 onion, 3 tbsp cumin, 1 tbsp cayenne pepper, 1 tsp chilli powder, 1tsp garlic salt, 1/2 tsp turmeric, 1 tsp salt, 1 stock cube dissolved in 450ml boiling water, oil for frying.
Dice your onion, peel and chop the carrots and drain all of your beans and the chickpeas. In a large saucepan, fry the onion in a teaspoon of oil until it is soft. Add your tin of tomatoes, then add the chickpeas to the pan. Then add your stock and the spices. One really good tip for buying spices is to look in the indian section of supermarkets, rather than buying the expensive little jars, you can buy 400g packs from brands like East End and Indus for about two pounds! Add the mixed beans to your pan and the chopped carrots. Bring it to the boil and then cook on a low heat for 2 hours until everything is soft and well cooked.
Enjoy, Love Mrs Gardom