A wonderfully fragrant Indonesian curry, richly flavoured but not chilli hot.
- 2tbsp oil
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 1kg (2lb 4oz) lean braising steak, cut into large cubes
- 2 x 400ml cans coconut milk
- peeled zest 1 lime, plus the juice of 2
- coriander leaves, sliced red chilli and toasted coconut flakes, to serve
- 2 fat thumb-sized pieces root ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1½tbsp galangal (Thai ginger) from a jar
- 3 garlic cloves, bashed and peeled
- 2 lemongrass stalks, outer layer removed, stalk bashed then roughly chopped
- 2tsp turmeric
- 1 red chilli (not Thai), roughly chopped
- 4tbsp sunflower oil
- 12 cardamom pods, seeds only
- 2tbsp tamarind paste
To make the paste, place the ingredients in a food processor, and whizz until thick. You may need to add a little water.
To make the curry, heat the oil in a large sauté pan, and add the curry paste and the cinnamon stick. Cook for 4 minutes, add the onion and cook for 5 minutes without colouring. Turn up the heat, season the beef and add to the pan, coating in the sauce and frying for a few minutes to brown. Add the coconut milk and lime zest, bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 1 hour 30 minutes to 2 hours, stirring often, until the beef is tender and the sauce is rich. It will benefit from a night in the fridge so that the flavours can come together.
To freeze: Freeze for up to a month, defrost thoroughly then reheat on the hob. To serve: Stir in the lime juice, and scatter with the coriander leaves, chilli and coconut. Serve with steamed jasmine rice.