SLOW COOKED SPICY COCONUT BEEF CURRY

I made this recipe up when I was about to make a stew but then felt like eating a spicier dish, so I switched things up last minute. Unlike most curries I make which has a curry paste, to begin with, I made this one using dry spices I already had in the pantry. I love how you get a real depth to this curry for not really a lot of preparation - it develops and gets those layered as it cooks. I use six dried chillis which gives it a nice and slow 'creeping up on you heat' - and you can use less if you need, or none if you want it mild. You will still get a little heat from the curry powder and ginger if you choose not to use the dried chillies. I call this a beef curry, but the real star is the carrots, they are SO good...the perfect thing with that spicy curry gravy! But if you did want to replace the beef altogether and make it vegan, you could use potatoes, kumara, chickpeas, cauliflower - anything like that, just make sure you adjust the cooking time to suit the new ingredients chosen. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do! 
 

TIME | 15 minutes preparation | 4 hours + cooking 
SERVES | 4-5 with sides (see below) 

900g of secondary cut beef of your choice, I used blade steak. 
2 heaped tablespoons of curry powder (I use this Acme one HERE)
2 tablespoons standard white flour
1 teaspoon turmeric 
3 tablespoons coconut oil (or any oil you have) 
1 tablespoon brown sugar 
2 large onions, diced 
5 large cloves garlic, crushed 
1 thumb-size piece of ginger, peeled and grated
1 can chopped tomatoes
1 jelly beef stock cube (I use those Continental stockpot ones)
6 dried red chillies
1 cinnamon quill (broken)
1-star anise
1 bay leaf
1 can of coconut cream 
5 large carrots, cut into chunky pieces 
Boiling water 
A few big handfuls of baby spinach

Options to serve with and garnish: 
Steamed rice, roti, naan or popadoms 
Cucumber 
Diced red onions 
Pickles or chutneys
Yoghurt
Roasted crushed peanuts 
Seeds, such as Nigella 
Herbs, such as coriander or chives 
Fresh lime wedges

Preheat oven to 150°C and put the jug onto boil. 

Cut the beef into chunky dices, and toss with the curry powder, flour, turmeric and a generous amount of salt and black pepper. Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat and cook the beef (shaking off excess flour first) in the coconut oil, I do this in two batches so not to overcrowd the pan. Reserve the remaining spiced flour to add back in later. Once the beef is browned all over, add in the brown sugar and stir for 1 minute to caramelize, then add the diced onions and cook for 1 minute. Next, add in the garlic and ginger and cook for a further 2 minutes.

Once the garlic and ginger have softened, add the remaining flour mixture to the pan with the can of chopped tomatoes, the beef stock pot cube, dried chillies, cinnamon quill (broken), the star anise, and bay leaf then mix well. Transfer to an ovenproof dish and stir in the can of coconut cream and carrots. Top the dish up with a little boiling water so that the beef and the carrots are submerged. Cover with a tightfitting lid or foil, and cook for 3 hours. After 3 hours of cooking, discard the chillies, cinnamon, bay and star anise. I felt by this time it already had perfect heat and spice, but you are welcome to leave them in longer. Cook uncovered for a further 1 hour or until the beef is super tender. Once the curry is ready, check seasonings, and then fold through the spinach. Serve with your chosen sides and garnishes. 

 

 

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