I have recently learned my new favourite curry is not actually a curry. Beef rendang is a spiced beef dish that originated in Indonesia. It has a base of coconut milk which is slowly reduced until it “splits”, separating the oil, which in turn is what cooks the meat to its dark brown, caramelised colour. Complex theory, yet so simple. Great. The rendang is also meant to be dry AKA. No gravy. Not saucy like your girlfriend.
1kg braising beef, cut into 5cm pieces
1 Tbls coriander seeds
1 tspn cumin seeds
1 tspn tumeric
1 brown onion, coarsely chopped
5 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
1 knob ginger, peeled, coarsely chopped
1 small knob galangal, peeled, coarsely chopped
1-2 long fresh red chilli, coarsely chopped
2 x 400ml cans coconut milk
1 cinnamon stick
½ bunch coriander, chopped
some fried cauliflower, to serve
Toast coriander and cumin seed and blitz in a spice grinder or mortar and pestle. A bit of texture is AOK.
Transfer to food processor. Add the tumeric, onion, garlic, ginger, galangal and chilli, and process until smooth.
Place the beef mixture in a large pot. Add the coconut milk and cinnamon. Bring to the boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 2 hours or until the beef is very tender.
Increase heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring often, for 25 minutes or until the liquid has evaporated.
Check seasoning, stir through coriander and serve with rice and a large group of family and friends (maybe triple the recipe first though). I also like to serve with fried cauliflower and crisp eshallots*. And herb yoghurt, which is not very cool or traditional but I love yoghurt with a curry… or even something that I think is a curry, but is not actually a curry.
*crisp eshallots are available from Asian food stores. They are thinly sliced and then deep fried eshallots. Crispy, tasty goodness. It’s quite easy to make your own also.
SOON TO COME TO THIS SPACE…. guest bloggers. Far out man.