Leon is John’s dad. John’s dad is Leon. We thought it was a nice name for our good fast food chain. And here we are. In the 1970s, Leon played poker. Every Monday evening. Well, for most of the night. Each week, a different wife would have the delight of catering their husband’s friends. (In a nice way.) Smoke would fill the house. And someone would walk away richer. But a little tired for work. Mostly the food would consist of sandwiches and pies, except on so-called ‘gala nights’, when there was a more ‘exotic’ offering like chilli con carne. This is how it went…


  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat, and gently fry the onion until it’s soft and translucent.
  2. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, just for a couple of minutes, then add the minced beef. Brown the meat thoroughly.
  3. Crumble in the stock cube and add the water. Stir everything together well, bubbling it all up, then add the tomatoes, tomato puree, the beans and the herbs and spices.
  4. Season with salt and pepper, then simmer over a low heat for 30-40 minutes, until it has reduced to a thick, fragrant, spicy chilli.
  5. For that final 70s touch, serve with rice or crackers and a good grating of Cheddar cheese.