Sloppy joes

Recipe by:

This is a great recipe to get fussy children to eat some vegetables — you could even add a carrot or two to the recipe and they will not notice

Sloppy joes

SERVES

4

PEOPLE

PREP TIME

10

MINUTES

COOKING TIME

20

MINUTES

CUISINE

COURSE

Main

Method

  1. Roughly chop the onion, red pepper, celery and chilli. I leave the seeds in my chilli as I like a little heat in my Sloppy Joes but leave those out if you prefer. Pop the lot into your food processor and pulse them until they are very finely chopped. You can do this by hand if you prefer, but it is much quicker and easier in the food processor. Add a few washed and peeled carrots cut into chunks to the vegetable mix if you want to get some extra vegetables in. Because everything is very finely chopped, fussy eaters will not even notice the vegetables, and they add loads of flavour as well as being nutritious.

  2. Warm a heavy pan with a little olive oil and add the finely chopped vegetables. Sauté over a medium heat for about ten minutes until soft. Add the minced beef, stirring to break it up and mix it thoroughly with the vegetables. Cook, stirring it regularly, until the meat is browned and begins to caramelise a little. Now add the tomato purée, stir that in well, and cook for a few more minutes. Blitz the tin of tomatoes in a blender and add that. For ease, you can use some passata, but a tin of chopped tomatoes blitzed until smooth is just as good and a lot cheaper. Season with salt and fresh ground black pepper and add the Worcestershire sauce.

  3. Bring everything to a soft boil, turn down the heat, before covering the pan with a lid and simmer for about twenty minutes. When the twenty minutes has passed, remove the lid and taste, add more seasoning if required. The Sloppy Joe mixture should be quite thick by now with a lot of the moisture cooked out. If it is still a little wet, allow it to simmer away for another few minutes with the lid off. You want something the consistency of a thick bolognese sauce, that will hold together in your burger buns and not simply pour out when you go to eat it.

  4. Shred some lettuce, thinly slice some onion, slice a large tomato, a beef tomato is perfect for this, and grate lots of vintage cheddar. Lightly toast your burger buns Now you are ready to plate up. Add some lettuce to the bottom half of each bun, then a big slice of tomato. Now pile a quarter of the Sloppy Joe mix onto each bun. Top that off with lots of grated cheddar and some thinly sliced onion.

    Note: You could add other of your favourite toppings of you like. I often have these with some pickled gherkins or jalapenos as well which are delicious. Add a generous portion of your lovely oven chips, and you are done. This is finger-licking food, fun and a little messy to eat, but full of fabulous flavour.

Ingredients

  • 450g minced Irish Angus steak

  • 2 onions

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 1 red pepper

  • 3 stalks celery

  • 1 green chilli

  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes

  • 3tbsp tomato purée 

  • 2 bsp Worcestershire sauce

  • 4 burger buns

  • A head of little gem lettuce

  • 1 beef tomato

  • Some thinly sliced onion

  • 200g Irish vintage Cheddar

Method

  1. Roughly chop the onion, red pepper, celery and chilli. I leave the seeds in my chilli as I like a little heat in my Sloppy Joes but leave those out if you prefer. Pop the lot into your food processor and pulse them until they are very finely chopped. You can do this by hand if you prefer, but it is much quicker and easier in the food processor. Add a few washed and peeled carrots cut into chunks to the vegetable mix if you want to get some extra vegetables in. Because everything is very finely chopped, fussy eaters will not even notice the vegetables, and they add loads of flavour as well as being nutritious.

  2. Warm a heavy pan with a little olive oil and add the finely chopped vegetables. Sauté over a medium heat for about ten minutes until soft. Add the minced beef, stirring to break it up and mix it thoroughly with the vegetables. Cook, stirring it regularly, until the meat is browned and begins to caramelise a little. Now add the tomato purée, stir that in well, and cook for a few more minutes. Blitz the tin of tomatoes in a blender and add that. For ease, you can use some passata, but a tin of chopped tomatoes blitzed until smooth is just as good and a lot cheaper. Season with salt and fresh ground black pepper and add the Worcestershire sauce.

  3. Bring everything to a soft boil, turn down the heat, before covering the pan with a lid and simmer for about twenty minutes. When the twenty minutes has passed, remove the lid and taste, add more seasoning if required. The Sloppy Joe mixture should be quite thick by now with a lot of the moisture cooked out. If it is still a little wet, allow it to simmer away for another few minutes with the lid off. You want something the consistency of a thick bolognese sauce, that will hold together in your burger buns and not simply pour out when you go to eat it.

  4. Shred some lettuce, thinly slice some onion, slice a large tomato, a beef tomato is perfect for this, and grate lots of vintage cheddar. Lightly toast your burger buns Now you are ready to plate up. Add some lettuce to the bottom half of each bun, then a big slice of tomato. Now pile a quarter of the Sloppy Joe mix onto each bun. Top that off with lots of grated cheddar and some thinly sliced onion.

    Note: You could add other of your favourite toppings of you like. I often have these with some pickled gherkins or jalapenos as well which are delicious. Add a generous portion of your lovely oven chips, and you are done. This is finger-licking food, fun and a little messy to eat, but full of fabulous flavour.