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Cooking Time 2 hours 30 minutes - Serves 2-3

If I said it, once I’ve said it 1 million times food is like a time machine. One bite of a certain dish and you can be transported back in time to a certain point in your life.

This is one of them dishes, recipes passed down to my dad from Maria (his mum) hence the name and down to me. Every bite reminds me of being young and being in Spain.


  • 1 white onion, diced.

  • 1 green pepper, diced.

  • 1 red pepper, diced.

  • 1 courgette, diced.

  • 3 tins of plum or chopped tomatoes.

  • 1 heap tbsp of brown sugar.

  • Optional, chilli flakes.


  1. Into a large pan add enough olive oil to coat the bottom. Add the onions and peppers, season and cook over a medium heat for 10 minutes or till tender. Next, add the courgette and if need be another drizzle of olive oil. Continue to cook till tender, around 7 minutes.

  2. Pour in the tomatoes, add the sugar and also the chillis if using. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat right down and simmer for two hours. Give it a stir every so often. Once done check for seasoning. It should be a little sweet, so if need be add more sugar and then just let it simmer for a few more minutes.

Growing up, we would have this with either rice, chicken in breadcrumbs and the pisto or just on its own with a couple of fried eggs and some crusty bread.


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