Basic Beef Curry

This is another one of those basic recipes that lends itself well to being tinkered with. I have changed the meat from beef to veal or pork, or the veggies depending on the season (butternut squash in the colder months, eggplant in the summer for example) and the results are practically foolproof since long-simmering stews are very forgiving: if the meat isn’t tender enough, just continue cooking some more. This makes this type of recipe ideal for the slow cooker as well!


  • 2 tbs coconut oil or ghee
  • 1 tbs cumin seeds
  • 3 dry red chilies (omit if preparing for baby)
  • 1 tbs garam marsala
  • 1 tbs turmeric
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 tbs mustard seeds
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2-cm knob of fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 800g beef for stew (bœuf bourguignon for example), cubed
  • 1 400g coconut milk (or coconut cream melted in hot filtered water)
  • Sundried tomatoes (softened in warm water)
  • Cabbage, roughly chopped
  • Fresh parsley or cilantro for garnish

photo 2

Heat the fat in a large heavy based pot over medium heat. Add the cumin and mustard seeds, heat through. Add the onion, garlic and ginger, and then the rest of the spices. Cook until the onion is soft and mustard seeds start to pop.

Add the beef, browning it and sealing with the spice mixture. Pour in coconut milk, bring to the boil and cook for 2,5 hours over low heat. Halfway through cooking, add the sundried tomatoes and cabbage, and more liquid if necessary (stock or filtered water).

Remove lid for 15 minutes and boil uncovered to reduce liquid to a thick sauce. Season with sea salt and sprinkle the parsley or coriander over the plates.

Serves 4



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