Another old favourite - apparently, this translates from the Spanish as Chilli with Meat. No claims for authenticity, of course, but this dish works well for an informal dinner. This is also a dish which can be made in larger quantities and then frozen - excellent for a quick dinner when one gets in late from work.

This is best cooked in a large saucepan with a non-stick lining - using a frying pan tends to mean bits of onion all over the cooker...

Put two tablespoons of vegetable oil in the saucepan, and add a large finely-sliced onion. Cook gently for a few minutes, until the onion is soft but not brown. You may also wish to add one or two large, mild peppers, finely chopped.

Then, add a pound or so of lean minced beef - I like to use the "extra-lean" minced steak you can get from the supermarkets these days, just to keep down the saturated fat intake. You may also like to add a few button mushrooms, halved or chopped.

Cook the beef, stiring frequently to make sure all the meat is broken up and cooked through. Then, add a couple of tablespoons of Chilli powder from the spice rack. Stir in and cook for a minute or so.

Now, add a tin of chopped tomatoes, juice and all, and make sure the tomatoes are thoroughly mixed in. I like to add the juice of a lemon and some freshly-ground black pepper at this point. You may want to add some salt, too, but this depends on whether the tinned tomatoes contain any salt.

Bowl of chilli con carne Let the chilli bubble away gently for ten minutes. Meanwhile, open a tin of red kidney beans, and drain the liquid away. Do this by putting the entire contents of the tin in a sieve, and rinsing under the cold water tap for a few moments.

Add the drained beans to the chilli, and stir gently, trying not to break up the beans too much. Simmer for another five or ten minutes.

The chilli may not need any thickening, especially if you like it a little runny. If you want to make the sauce a little thicker, then put a heaped teaspoon of cornflour in a small bowl or cup and mix with a couple of fluid ounces of water. Stir the cornflour mix into the chilli, making sure it all gets properly heated through.

Serve in bowls, perhaps with my flavoured rice and a cool beer or two. Baked potatoes also work well.