Uni Life

A Recipe for Disaster

It’s that time again!

This week I thought I would write about another important, if not the MOST important (which may say a lot about me), factor of student life: Eating!

To do this, I thought I would share a recipe which has got my girlfriend and I through some of the cold dark nights of University and surprisingly it doesn’t involve pasta or a ready meal. No. This is:

THE STEW OF DESTINY (aka Richard’s really bad at cooking and even worse at writing recipes)

THE STEW OF DESTINY for two-ish people (not for vegetarians… sorry guys) comprises of these main (ish) ingredients:

Beef Mince  – buy a frozen bag from your local supermarket… or if you want, be fancy and buy some of the fresh stuff!.

3 closed cup Mushrooms –I like to buy them fresh just because I like to put them in the paper bag.

An Onion – A bog standard Onion, or a spring onion, or a red onion. Whatever you feel like.

New potatoes – that’s the little ones. Not the big ones. 6 to 8 should do.

Tomato Puree – I like to get a squeezy tube because they are fun.

Mixed herbs – dried herbs… which are mixed. It’s in the name.

Beef stock cube –Oxo cubes! Get the beef ones as this is a beef stew.


Ok so first things first, peel the potatoes. Never a fun experience but listening to a funky tune at the same time can help ease the pain. After that, cut them into cubey squarey shapes. I don’t know the technical term for it. Dicing? That sounds close. Watch your fingers!

Cut up the mushrooms and onions too so they are quite small. You probably won’t need the entire onion, but cut up as much as you feel you want. Some people are bigger onion fans than others!

Ok, now throw the potatoes into a pan and set them to boil. Unsure on how to boil potatoes? Here is a google search to get you started.

This might take a while so turn up the music and dance around the kitchen for a bit. Maybe fit in some Air guitar practice whilst you wait.

After about 7 minutes, get your frying pan out and heat it with a little oil. I use sunflower oil because sunflowers are awesome.

Throw (gently)as much of the beef mince as you feel you want into the pan. Once you have heated it up a bit and fry the mince until it is a tasty looking brown colour. Now you can add the mushrooms and onions to the mince and mix it all together. Smells good right? Yeah probably.

Continue on your frying crusade until the onion and mushrooms take on a slightly softer quality. Don’t over-do it though. I burnt the onion once. Nasty.

Ok now add a bit of water to the pan, so it goes up to about a 1/3 of the pan. Now it’s getting more of a stew quality!

Ok so to this bubbling mass of awesome add the tomato puree. The more you add the more tomatoey the end result will be, so add as much as you feel comfortable adding. I usually squeeze in about half a tube. Along with this, add a sprinkle of mixed herbs, salt and pepper to flavour. Also, crush the stock cube between your fingers and sprinkle that over it the food as well. Stir it all together so everything mixes up nicely and let it simmer for few minutes.

By now, the potatoes should be done. If they are, drain them and add them to the frying pan as well, mixing them in nicely with the tasty mess you have just created.

Now all you have to do is serve and eat! I suggest serving into a bowl as it can get quite messy serving it out, but that is a choice I leave to you good reader!

The glorious thing about this stew is that it has infinite variations to fit your needs. Want it more tangy? Add some Worcester sauce! Spicy? Add some chilli! Don’t like beef? Try lamb! Don’t like mushrooms? Why not try sweetcorn!

This amazingly badly written recipe could be the start of a new and exciting cooking experience for you. Also, it has the added bonus of being able to last for a few days so if you make too much you can put some in your fridge and heat it up again the next day, saving you from having to do all that pesky cooking again and allowing you to focus on the more important things in life. Like television.


DISCLAIMER: Richard is a terrible cook. It is probably advisable to completely ignore this recipe and ask someone who actually knows things. Or just get take away.


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