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Chilli Con Carne // 1970s

If you have a few hours to spare as the mixture bubbles gently on the hob, this chilli con carne recipe is excellent for a chilly day or casual gathering. Just don't forget to soak the kidney beans overnight before you get started!
Original Recipe: 'Chilli Con Carne' (Book 9, 1977)
Speed: 2 hrs. 40 mins. | Serves: 8


  • 225g dried red kidney beans, soaked overnight

  • 4 tbsp. corn oil

  • 2 onions, chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed

  • 1 kg lean minced beef

  • 1 green pepper, cored, seeded and chopped

  • 1-2 tbsp. mild chilli powder

  • 1 tsp. paprika

  • 1 tsp. ground cumin

  • 1 tbsp. tomato purée

  • 1 tbsp. flour

  • Salt

  • 2x 400g tins of tinned tomatoes



1. Be sure to soak the kidney beans in water overnight the day before you plan to cook the chilli.

2. The next day, 2 1/2 to 3 hours before you wish to serve, drain the kidney beans and cook gently in boiling salted water for 45 minutes or until almost tender. Drain and reserve about 150ml water.

3. Chop the onions, garlic and pepper. Heat the oil in a pan, add the onions and garlic and fry until golden.

4. Add the beef and green pepper and fry for 5-6 minutes, stirring constantly to break up the meat.

5. Stir in the chilli powder, paprika, cumin, tomato purée, flour and salt to taste, and cook for 2 minutes.

6. Add the un-drained tomatoes and the beans, mix thoroughly and bring to the boil.

7. Lower the heat, cover and simmer for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally to prevent the meat from sticking to the pan. If the mixture becomes dry, add the reserved bean water and be sure to taste and adjust the seasoning if required.

Serve as you like! We had ours with boiled white rice, a good dollop of sour cream and coriander. YUM.


Original Recipe for ‘Chilli Con Carne'

'BOOK 9': The Complete Colour Cookbook (1977)

Edited By: Gill Edden

Publisher: Octopus Books Limited (59 Grosvenor Street, London, W1, England, U.K.)

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