Quick Chilli Con Carne & Cornbread Muffins

One evening the man and I stumbled across a repeat of Heston Blumenthal's In Search of Perfection on BBC Lifestyle - this episode was on making the perfect chilli con carne. When the episode started we were very keen on making notes to "make this at home" (I mean, who does that with Heston's food?) until we realised it would take about 5 hours to cook the shortrib alone...and three days for the completed dish to be assembled! Read about a Brit's attempt to make it here . It nevertheless inspired us to make a chilli con carne, and of course, with Nigella on my bookshelf I soon found one (this recipe comes from Nigella Express), and cornbread muffins. I was very happy with the result, but have adapted both recipes, my changes are marked with a *. I think it would be a great base to a Mexican feast, if you're having people over for dinner - add some tortillas, sour cream, mature cheddar, guacamole, and maybe a salsa made with tomato, onion and coriander?

For the chilli con carne:
150g chorizo sausage
500g minced beef 
1/2 tsp ground cumin 
1/2 tsp ground coriander 
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon 
1 tin of tomatoes (diced or chopped)* 
1x 390g can mixed spicy beans 
60ml sweet chilli sauce 
1/2 tsp chilli flakes*
1/2 tsp paprika*

*I used tin tomatoes, instead of the recommendation for tomato pasta sauce. I added an extra 1/2 tsp of chilli, and added 1/2 tsp paprika too - very happy with the results!

Put the sliced chorizo into a hot, heavy-based pan and cook over a medium heat until the sausage crisps a little and gives up its orange-red oil. Now remove the chorizo and set aside - but do not clean the pan. Add the mince and cook for about 5 to 10 minutes, breaking it up with a wooden fork and cook till it browns. 
Once the mince has browned you can add back in the cooked chorizo and stir in the spices. Now add the tin tomatoes, spicy beans and sweet chilli sauce. Add a little extra water if it looks too dry.

Add the chili flakes if you need more heat or if you've managed only to find some regular canned beans. Bring to the boil and then turn down the heat and simmer for 20 or so minutes.
For the cornbread muffins (makes 12):
3/4 cup plain flour
3/4 cup cornmeal (or maizemeal)
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp sugar
50g butter melted
1 egg
1 1/4 cup buttermilk
1 cup sweetcorn, blended to a chunky puree
1/2 cup grated mature cheddar (optional)

Put all dry ingredients (cornmeal, flour, salt, sugar, baking powder and soda) into a bowl and stir to combine. In another bowl mix the melted butter, egg and buttermilk. Pour this mixture into the dry ingredients, and stir lightly until mixed through, adding sweetcorn puree, and cheddar if using (lumps are ok!).

Divide batter among muffin tins, top with cheddar if you wish, and bake for about 20 minutes, until tops are golden and slightly crispy.


  1. Hi there,

    It is noticeable that there is a great number of tasty recipes on your site and we would like to suggest you to have a look at the Top Food Blog section on our site.

    myTaste is a social platform for foodies and blogs who has recipes or site owners like you and it helps to reach more people, get more visibility on the web and share or save recipes.
    To add your blog to the Top Food Blog list just follow the link: http://www.mytaste.co.za/add-your-food-blog
    If you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact us at: info@mytaste.co.za
    You can also find us on: https://www.facebook.com/myTasteZA

    Kind regards,
    Immanuel Kabuhung



Meet the author

Google analytics

On Twitter : @AGorgeousLifeSA

On Instagram : @agorgeouslife