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3 Brilliant budget-friendly Winter meals to tuck into this week

This article first appeared in City Press.

01 Jul 2018
mom and daughter cooking in the kitchen

(image: iStock)

Food prices have skyrocketed and the winter cold makes the craving for a sumptuous meal bigger than ever. With this in mind, #Trending chose some supertasty, money-conscious recipes. Enjoy!.

Saucy chicken and chips (Irene Dasari)

I tried making this chicken for the first time for my dad and brother when I was still a teen in secondary school. My mom was unexpectedly admitted to hospital and I had to make a plan to feed the family. I added every delicious spice and sauce I could think of and, now, almost 30 years later, it’s still a firm favourite in my home. I hope you will love it too.

2kg chicken thighs
Oven-baked potato chips of your choice

1/4 cup milk
3 tbs lemon juice
3 tbs mayonnaise
2 tbs chicken spice
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground garlic
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp Garam masala
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp orange food colouring powder (optional)
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1/2 cup peri-peri sauce
1 level tbs flour
1 cup chicken stock OR 1 chicken stock cube mixed into a cup of boiling water

Fry or bake thickly sliced potato chips as you normally do and season to taste.

Mix all the marinade ingredients together (except the flour and chicken stock) to form a paste.

Rub the marinade into the skinned, washed, drained and scored chicken pieces. Place in a suitable oven tray, cover with foil and refrigerate until needed. Bake at 160 degrees Celsius for one hour in a preheated oven. Remove from the oven, crank the heat up to 200 degrees Celsius, remove foil and pour the liquid into a bowl.

Roast the chicken for about five minutes until browned. Add the chicken stock to the pan juices. Mix the flour in a little cold water to make a slurry and then mix into the stock mixture. Stir well. Add the cooked chips to the chicken pan and pour in the stock mix. Toss gently. Bake at 160 degrees Celsius for around 15 minutes. Serve with a salad and crispy rolls, roti or rice.

2. White chilli (Simon Rimmer)

UK cook and restaurateur Simon Rimmer contributed this recipe to The Guardian back in 2009. Since then, it’s become a favourite at #Trending. It’s vegetarian, meaning it’ll be perfect for a Meat-Free Monday, and it doesn’t require any oil – making it very healthy. It’s called white chilli because the cannellini and butter beans are light in colour. The liberal use of chilli will warm your bones during these icy July nights. Make plenty and freeze it in separate containers for the perfect lunch. We’ve adapted the ingredients slightly according to what’s available in South African shops.

330ml bottle light Mexican beer (Corona works well)
2 onions, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed
2 red peppers, deseeded and finely chopped
2 jalapeños, finely chopped
3 chillies, finely chopped
1 tbs ground cumin
400ml vegetable stock
bunch fresh coriander
50ml rice vinegar
pinch salt
400g each canned cannellini and butter beans, rinsed and drained
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp paprika
250g cheddar cheese, grated
lime wedges and coriander to garnish

Put the beer, onion, garlic, peppers, jalapeños, chillies, cumin and stock into a large pan and simmer for 10 minutes.

Blend the coriander, vinegar and salt in a food processor to make a smooth paste. Add the coriander paste and the beans to the pan with the spiced onion-chilli mixture, and simmer for 25 minutes. Add the oreganum, chilli powder and paprika. Serve sprinkled with grated cheese and garnished with lime wedges and coriander leaves.

3. Supreme meat, samp and beans (Irene Dasari)

This has to be my son Cameron’s absolute favourite meal, so much so that when he was in Europe on holiday during their freezing winter, eating the most amazing cuisine, he phoned me to ask me if I could make it on his return to South Africa, even though we were experiencing scorching summer temperatures here. Moms will always oblige.

1 onion chopped finely
1/4 cup oil
1 teaspoon each of roasted and ground coriander, cumin and fennel seeds
1 star anise
2 bay leaves
1 tsp turmeric
2 tsp ginger and garlic paste
2 tbs masala
1 tbs chilli powder
1kg mince (beef, lamb, or chicken necks, feet and giblets work well too)
2 sprigs curry leaves
1 grated tomato
1 stock cube of your choice
2 can sugar beans
2 tbs Robertsons Shisanyama seasoning
1 cup boiling water
2 cups dried samp cooked as per package instructions, or 3 cans of samp

1 onion
2 tomatoes
3 green chillies
1/2 English cucumber
salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 tsp sugar
juice of half a lime
1/4 cup freshly chopped mint
Finely cube the onion, tomatoes, chillies and English cucumber. Mix in salt, pepper and sugar. Add the juice of half a lime and mix in freshly chopped mint before serving.

Fry one onion in oil. Add roasted and ground coriander and cumin seeds, fennel seeds, star anise and bay leaves, and fry for two minutes. Add turmeric, ginger and garlic paste, masala, and chilli powder and braise for +-5 mins. Add 1kg of lamb which has been cut into bite-sized pieces and washed, curry leaves, one grated tomato and one stock cube, mix well with braised spices and cook on medium heat for +-30 minutes. Add sugar beans, Robertsons Shisanyama seasoning and one cup of boiling water. Mix well and then add cooked samp. Allow to cook on medium to low heat for half an hour. Add a little water at a time, when necessary. We don’t enjoy a dry samp, we love the delicious, thick gravy. Total cooking time is about one hour. Serve with sambals.

ALSO READ: 10 Meals that just taste better when you're wearing slippers

Read more on: winter  |  comfort food

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