Roasted sweet potato and black bean chili burritos with sour cream, coriander and lime

November 20, 2010


It’s been ages since I made chili and I really don’t know why I left it so long. It always goes down a storm (we had it last night and everyone wants it again this evening). From little more than 2 cups of beans, some tinned tomatoes and a few onions you can feed up to 10 people depending on how you serve it. I think the IMF would approve – shouldn’t joke but until we get our heads around this madness what else is there?

Chili has to be one of the most versatile dishes. You can serve it straight up or with any combination of rice, guacamole, jalapeno, grated cheese, burritos, tacos, lettuce and/or salsa. Water it down and you have the perfect winter soup especially fab when topped with some nachos, sour cream and cheese. I really could eat this stuff every day.

This week I’ve gone for a different approach. As we have sweet potatoes, I thought I’d do something with them. I roasted them and they went  into a burrito with the chilli, along with a dollop of sour cream, lots of coriander and a generous spritz of lime. Absolutely delicious and very, very addictive. Make plenty because one or two probably won’t  be enough……..

This recipe is for 2 or 3 people but you’ll have lots of chili leftover (there’s no point in making a smaller quantity). Not to worry, it keeps really well in the fridge for a few days or you can bag it up and stick it in the freezer for the ultimate easy dinner some day in the future (ok, Monday) when you just can’t face cooking…..

Black bean chili – enough for 6-10 people

You’ll need:

2 cups black beans aka turtle beans – for these you’ll need to hit your local health food shop.If you can’t get them, kidney beans will do but you’ll miss out on the amazing chocolate colour the chilli goes with the turtle beans

Turtle beans

1 bay leaf

4 teaspoon cumin seeds

4 teaspoons oregano

4 paprika

4 bird’s eye chilis – less if you don’t like heat at all (it’s not very hot with 4) and more if you do.

3/4 medium onions roughly chopped

Vegetable oil

5 cloves garlic roughly chopped

2 tins chopped tomatoes

Soak the beans overnight then rinse before you are ready to start. Cover them in about  5cms cold water, drop in the bay leaf then bring to the boil.

While this is going on, prepare the spices – toast the cumin seeds and oregano in a pan over a medium heat. Toss the pan as you go so nothing gets burnt. As soon as you get the first whiff of the roasting spices add the paprika and chilli. Keep tossing for a moment then take off the heat. Allow to cool slighty then grind the spices together either with a mortar and pestle or a small coffee grinder as Ido. When you have a coarse powder set aside for later.

At this stage the beans should be at boiling point and if you don’t cook beans regularly you’ll probably be disgusted by all the foamy stuff floating in your pot. Don’t panic, it’s perfectly normal, just skim it off. Turn down the heat and leave the beans simmering.

Using a large pot saute the onions in a glug of vegetable oil over a medium heat until they soften. This will take about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and keep cooking until they’ve softened too. Now add your spices along with a generous pinch of salt. Keeping tossing for a few minutes then add the tomatoes. Cook everything for about 15 minutes then add to the beans. Stir everything together then cook for about another 45 minutes or until the beans are tender.

Roasted Sweet Potato and black bean chili burrito with sour cream, coriander and lime

You’ll need:

2 cups black bean chili (see above)

500gr sweet potatoes

Vegetable oil

Sour cream

A large handful coriander roughly chopped


Peel the sweet potatoes and cut into slices about 1cm thick. Toss in a little vegetable oil then put in a roasting dish then into a medium oven (Gas mark 6) . The slices will take about 30- 40  minutes to roast and you’ll need to toss them halfway through to make sure they do evenly.When they’re ready, heat up the chili and wrap the burritos in some tin foil and pop them into the oven for about 5-6  mins to warm. When everything’s ready, prepare the burritos by spooning some chili down the centre. Top with a few slices of sweet potatoes, a dollop of sour cream and a generous amount of coriander (I can never get enough of this stuff) and finally some lime juice. Wrap up and eat immediately (but you knew that didn’t you?) Enjoy!!!!

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