By Alice Murphy
This is a fantastically straightforward recipe that my mother accidentally cobbled together whilst low on supplies in the kitchen, and it's been a go-to favourite of mine for pretty much as long as I’ve been eating solid food! She then taught me how to make this simple recipe for myself when I first moved out to university. From experience, I can confirm that it’s perfect for the hungry student who wants a quick, filling, and healthy meal on a budget.
Prep time: about 25 mins
For 2 portions, you will need...
About a mugful of rice (can be basmati, brown, wholegrain... whatever you have to hand!)
1 tin of butter beans
1 tin of chopped tomatoes
2 cloves of garlic (although, if you’re like me, feel free to go crazy and add about 5)
Large splash of olive oil
Herbs and seasoning of your choice (optional)
· Start cooking your rice beforehand as instructed on packet – leave it to one side once it’s ready.
· Dice the onions and garlic, then fry them in the olive oil on a fairly high heat – make sure you don’t skimp on the oil and that the bottom of the pan is generously coated, as this gives the stew a lovely velvety texture.
· Keep stirring the onion and garlic as they fry. Just before they start to brown, drain the butter beans and add them to the pan. Continue to fry for another minute.
· Lower the heat on the pan and add the chopped tomatoes. Stir them through the onion, garlic, and beans and allow it to simmer for about 5 minutes.
· As it starts to simmer, season with black pepper. At this point, I also like to add herbs and seasoning, depending on what I have to hand! My mum always used to add fresh mint but in a student kitchen, dried ingredients are more affordable and convenient – my personal favourites are a generous helping of mixed herbs, or if I fancy having it a with a little spicy kick, chilli powder or paprika work well.
· Once the stew has simmered through, serve it with rice and a generous helping of black pepper. Enjoy!