Camper van tomato stew

As the name suggests, this recipe was indeed concocted during a camping trip in our van! With my trusted stock of gorgeous Lonely Lentil dried herbs and spices, I’m always able to create a tasty meal out of very limited supplies of fresh produce. All of the ingredients (except a lone carrot and a few fresh cherry tomatoes) are from the van’s trusty ‘pantry box’ (i.e. you’ll probably have lurking in your kitchen cupboards at home!).

The smoked paprika really is the star of this dish… the aroma mixed with the tomato-ey base and the herbs is mouth-watering!

New Forest Camping

• 1 heaped tsp onion powder

• 1 heaped tsp garlic powder

• 1 heaped tsp Maldon salt

• 1 heaped teaspoon smoked paprika

• 1 heaped teaspoon dried basil

• 1 heaped tsp dried chives

• 1 tsp chilli flakes (optional)

• 1 tin butterbeans

• 1/3 cup red split lentils

• 1 carrot diced

• drizzle of olive oil

• 1 carton tomato passata (I used the one with added garlic)

• Handful of cherry tomatoes

• Black pepper (+ added Maldon salt if needed)

• ½ veggie stock cube crumbled or 1 tsp bouillon powder

• Splash of white wine (if you have a bottle open! Optional)

• 1 tin garden peas (or 1 cup of frozen peas) or green pepper or courgette (whatever green vegetable you fancy!)

• Pumpkin seeds for sprinkling

• Grated cheese on top

(or nutritional yeast for vegans)

Yummy stew!

  1. Add the butterbeans, the lentils and the diced carrots to a large bowl and add all the spices/herbs and salt. Mix in so everything is nicely evenly coated. Drizzle in some olive oil to lightly coat and leave to marinade for a couple of hours ideally (or longer).
  2. Heat a pan and add the marinated mixture. Cook for about 5-10 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent sticking.
  3. Once the butterbeans are turning nicely golden brown and the carrots are starting to soften, add the carton of passata to the pan and stir well. Add the bouillon or crumble in the ½ stock cube.
  4. Add the wine or a splash of water to loosen the stew. Season well with black pepper and add the cherry tomatoes.
  5. Leave too simmer for about 20 minutes, until the lentils are soft and broken down.
  6. Add the peas and cook for a further 5 minutes or so, until they are heated through. Have a taste and check for seasoning level, add more salt/pepper if required.
  7. Serve with a sprinkling of pumpkin seeds and grated cheese (or nutritional yeast if vegan). I also like to add a final extra flourish of dried chives.

Van Life