Beef curry

Beef curry

Gulai daging lembu

By
From
South East Asian Food

This rich and hot curry comes from the north, and is very like the Thai Kaeng Matsaman. I have specified a little more meat than usual as it improves with keeping.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
750g bladebone or chuck steak, trimmed of fat and cut into cubes
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
5 shallots, sliced
or 1 small brown onion, cut into two across and then thinly sliced lengthwise
2 garlic cloves, sliced
2cm stick cinnamon
2 points star anise
2-3 cups very thin coconut milk or water
3 medium-sized potatoes, quartered, (optional)
1 cup thick coconut milk
1-2 tablespoons tamarind water, or more to taste
sugar, to taste (optional)
salt, to taste

Paste spices

Quantity Ingredient
2 tablespoons coriander seed
2 teaspoons fennel seed
2 teaspoons cumin seed
2.5cm piece cinnamon bark
6 cloves
2 cardamom pods, broken open
2 points star anise
pinch black pepper
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
10 medium-sized dried chillies, soaked in warm water until soft and then squeezed dry
or chilli powder, to taste
2.5cm piece ginger
2 garlic cloves
10 shallots

Method

  1. To prepare the spice paste grind all the dry spices to a fine powder. Mash the chillies, ginger, garlic and shallots to a fine paste. Mix the dry spice powder with the chilli paste mixture and add a little water to make an amalgamated paste (about 3–4 tablespoons). Alternatively, substitute 4 tablespoons Malay meat curry powder (rempah daging) for the ground dry spices and the chillies in the paste. Mix the meat and the paste in a bowl and set aside until it is needed.
  2. Heat the oil in a saucepan, and when this is hot fry the shallots and garlic with the cinnamon and star anise until brown and fragrant. Add the meat and stir-fry until the spices smell cooked. Add the thin coconut milk or water, cover, and simmer until the meat is tender, adding the potatoes, if you are using them, halfway through. When the meat is cooked, turn the heat as low as possible, add the thick coconut milk and stir, then add tamarind water, sugar and salt to taste and reheat but do not boil.
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