Cowboy soup

Cowboy soup is vegetarian black bean chilli called by a name that avoids the distinctly not-for-spice-fearing-kids 'C' word (chilli). Healthy, hearty and versatile, it can be scooped up with wraps, guacamole and sour cream or used as a filling for quesadillas. It freezes beautifully (just decant into freezer bags in individual portions and label, see pic). Beef it up for adults with a garnish of sliced chillies, if desired. You won't miss the meat.

Serves 4


1 tbsp rapeseed oil
1 red onion
2 garlic cloves
1 yellow pepper
1 stick celery
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp chilli powder
coarse sea salt
1 tin black beans
1 tin chopped tomatoes
100ml vegetable stock (or water)
minute-make lucky-dip guacamole, to serve
a few coriander leaves, to serve
sour cream, to serve
grated cheddar, to serve
sliced green chillies, to serve (optional)
wholemeal gluten-free tortillas, to serve

Takes 35 minutes

1. Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Show the kids how to chop the onion and add to the pan. Crush in the garlic (kids find this easiest using a garlic crusher as they don't have to peel the cloves which can be fiddly for little fingers). Show them how to deseed the pepper and finely dice it, top and tail the celery and add both to the pan. Give it all a stir and cook for about 10 minutes until soft.

2. Add the cumin, chilli powder and a pinch of salt, then get them to drain the beans through a colander and add to the pan as well. Pour in the tomatoes and stock and simmer for about 20 minutes while you make the minute-make lucky-dip guacamole. 

3. Serve topped with coriander leaves, guacamole, sour cream, grated cheddar and sliced green chillies, if you like, and scoop up with wholemeal tortillas.