Tag Archives: beef

Taste-Bud Dazzling Quick Thai Curry Feast

 

Fiery hot but oh-so flavoursome, these curries and the accompanying noodles dazzle the taste buds with the different flavours that rocket about but the heat of the chillies is perfectly counter-balanced by the cooling, soothing coconut milk and coriander so that you can enjoy this lovely supper without feeling like your mouth is on fire. A definite favourite which uses lots of store-cupboard ingredients, is really quick and can mostly be prepared in advance – what’s not to like?!

What you need…

Red Chicken Curry

Splash of rapeseed oil

2 garlic cloves, chopped

1 x 90g jar red Thai curry paste (I prefer Bart Infusions)

1 x 400ml can coconut milk

4 chicken breasts, skinned and cut into bite-sized pieces

125ml chicken stock

2 tablespoons fish sauce

4 dried kaffir lime leaves

A large handful of coriander, chopped and red chilli, deseeded and sliced, to garnish

Green Beef Curry

1 aubergine, peeled and cubed

2 onions, peeled and sliced

Splash of rapeseed oil

1 x 90g jar green Thai curry paste (as above, I prefer Bart Infusions)

500g lean beef (fillet if you’re feeling flush) cut into thin strips

1 x 400g can coconut milk

2 tablespoons fish sauce

1 tablespoon brown sugar

2 dried red chillies, finely sliced

2.5cm ginger root, grated

4 dried kaffir lime leaves

A large handful of basil leaves, torn up, to garnish

Sesame Hot Noodles

2 tablespoons rapeseed oil

1 tablespoon sesame seed oil

2 garlic cloves, chopped

1 tablespoon smooth peanut butter

1 dried red chilli, finely sliced

2 tablespoons sesame seeds

3 tablespoons light soy sauce

Juice of 1 large lime

Sea salt and black pepper, to taste

1 large handful coriander, chopped

400g medium egg noodles

What to do…

Curry 1: Red Chicken

Heat the oil to moderate in a large pan or wok. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Tip in the curry paste and cook for 10-15 seconds, then gradually add the coconut milk, stirring the whole time. Add the chicken pieces and cook over a gentle heat for 5 minutes.

Stir in the stock, fish sauce and kaffir lime leaves. Cook for a further 2 minutes. Check the chicken is cooked all the way through. Turn off the heat, pop on a lid and set aside until you’re nearly ready to eat. Reheat and garnish with the coriander and chilli – fabulous.

Curry 2: Green Beef

Blanch the aubergine cubes and onion slices in boiling water for 2 minutes to soften. Drain.

Heat the oil to moderate in a large pan or wok, add the curry paste and cook for 1 minute, stirring continuously.

Whop up the heat to high, tip in the beef and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the coconut milk, fish sauce and sugar and bring to the boil, stirring the whole time.

Add the aubergine, onion, chillies, ginger and lime leaves and cook for a further 2 minutes. Turn off the heat, pop on a lid and set aside until you’re nearly ready to eat. Reheat and garnish with basil – yummy!

Noodle Time

In a large screw-top jar, chuck in the oils, garlic and peanut butter. Pop the lid on and shake like mad to fully mix together. Add everything else except the noodles and coriander. Pop the lid back on and shake like mad again. Set aside until you’re about ready to serve.

Cook the noodles according to the packet (mine take 4 minutes in boiling, salted water). Drain and tip them into a warmed serving dish. Shake the ‘dressing’ one more time and pour over the noodles. Toss together like you would a salad to make sure that all the noodles are amply covered with the lovely dressing. Garnish with coriander and serve with your piping hot curries. Such a joy!

Tip…

Once the curries are cooked, you can keep them in the fridge for up to 24 hours before reheating them to serve. Doing so encourages the flavours to develop and also means less work in the kitchen whilst your friends are around if this is a supper you are sharing. Always a good shout: cook ahead, eat relaxed!

Inspired by…

Carol Bowen (from a very old book)

How easy…

Dead easy, you can cook ahead and this supper is absolutely fabulous!

Just Gorgeous Beef Casserole with Red Wine and Cinnamon

 

I’ve had this recipe in my ‘to do’ file for years but every time I’ve flicked through, I’ve seen the words ‘prunes’ and ‘cinnamon’ in the ingredients list, hesitated and then….moved on. However, I finally decided to try it and, as a woman who has cooked hundreds of beef casseroles, this one stands head and shoulders above the rest! The eclectic mix of ingredients make for a fabulously rich sauce with beautifully intensified, silky flavours – everyone around the table was agreed – this is the best of all that we’ve tried: why did we wait so long? Try it, you’ll love it!

Serves 6 – 8

What you need…

1 x ovenproof casserole

600ml boiling water from kettle

2 beef stockpots

1kg braising steak, diced

600ml robust red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon works well)

4 garlic cloves, chopped

4 cinnamon sticks

12 bay leaves

8 slices good quality streaky bacon, chopped

Knob of butter

12 small shallots, chopped

24 baby carrots

16 soft dried prunes

2 tablespoons plain flour

What to do…

The night before! Put the meat, wine, garlic, cinnamon and bay leaves into a large bowl, give them a quick stir and pop in the fridge overnight, allowing the flavours to develop.

The next day, preheat the oven to 150° / 300°f / gas 2.

In a small jug, dissolve the stockpots into the boiling water from the kettle (a small balloon whisk works really well). Set aside.

Drain the meat, reserving the marinade. Then dry the meat on kitchen roll.

Fry the streaky bacon in a large saucepan over a moderate heat until it starts to brown. Add the knob of butter and then the shallots, carrots, prunes and reserved cinnamon and bay leaves. Sauté until the shallots and carrots start to brown. Using a slotted spoon, remove the ingredients to your casserole dish.

To the pan, add the meat and brown. Tip in the flour, stir well and then reintroduce the shallots mixture. Whack up the heat to high and add the stock and the marinade. Bring it to the boil and then tip the whole lot back into the casserole dish, pop on the lid and then stick it in the oven. Cook in the oven for 2½ hours. The smell, as it’s cooking will be amazing! Take the casserole out and check that the meat is succulent by retrieving one piece and trying it – if it’s not quite falling apart in your mouth, pop it back in for another 15 minutes, but it should be done by now.

Once removed from the oven, leave to rest for 15 minutes and then serve with really lovely buttery mashed potato (naughty) or baked potatoes (good) as well as either boiled broccoli or a steamed leek and cabbage mix. Take your first forkful, and sit back and smile – the flavours really are sublime and frankly, you just want to keep eating more!

Inspired by…

Waitrose Food Illustrated from several years ago!

How easy…

Really easy and so worth it!