Apparently, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall thinks fresh ginger is the sort of thing you might just have lying around in your fridge waiting to be used up. Hugh, let me tell you this. I buy fresh ginger, and freeze it in chunks ready for use. It goes very mushy on defrosting but that's fine because I'm usually mushing it up in pastes for curry. However, it's not just lying around ready to be used in emergency suppers. The days when you really haven't given any thought to what you might eat until it's actually tea time and the ravenous hordes are, well, ravenous.
On the day in question, then, while I didn't have the ginger available to make the Ketchup Curry which appears in Veg Everyday in the Storecupboard Suppers section. I was inspired by the suggested alternative of ketchup chilli and knocked up my own version with chickpeas - and no ginger.
This, for me, really is 'store cupboard'. The fresh ingredients are an onion, a couple of cloves of garlic and a red pepper, which I nearly always have in (onion and garlic I use pretty much every day, and if nothing else, I chop up the pepper in lunchboxes). You wouldn't need to have the red pepper - and if you are proper swanky, you might have a jar of them knocking around actually in your store cupboard (I aspire to this but in reality, there never is a jar of beautiful red peppers in my store cupboard). I'll admit to having far too comprehensive a selection of spices, but cumin and paprika are ones that I use regularly and always have in. You could use hot smoked paprika or chilli powder depending on the palate of your ravenous hordes. It does use quite a lot of ketchup, but again, it's always in the cupboard and I'm sure you could use tomato puree or a can of tomatoes, depending on what you had to hand.
I served it as a topping for baked potatoes, with grated cheese and some left over soured cream. There was also some watercress. In a surprise verdict from my own ravenous hordes (and my fiercest critics), Blue loved it, while Pink wasn't so keen (I was anticipating the reverse). I liked it a lot.
Chickpea Ketchup Chilli
1 small-ish onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, also finely chopped
1 red pepper, finely chopped
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp cumin
2 x 400g tins of chickpeas, drained
10 tbsp tomato ketchup
Put a good splash of olive oil in a pan, and gently fry the onion and garlic for 5 minutes or so and add in the pepper, the paprika and cumin. Stir together then cook on a gentle heat for another 5 minutes or so, stirring every now and again, till softened. Tip in the drained chick peas and add the ketchup, plus a little water, stirring as you go, to make a sauce. Make sure everything is heated through, then serve as your store cupboard or fridge permits - on baked potatoes, with rice, on its own, even...