Beef Rendang is one of my favourite Asian dishes - coming from Indonesia and Malaysia ( I think both countries are haggling over who it belongs to - a bit like who invented the Pav.
As always I make double quantities and freeze in portions for another fuss free meal.
This is galangal. It belongs to the ginger family but is much harder and denser than ginger and has a camphor or menthol aroma.
You will need dried tamarind. It comes compressed with seeds and fibres in clear packaging which you add hot water to. Dont buy pureed in a jar as it is inferior in quality. Asian grocers will sell it.
After you add water it turns into a thick pulp which you will strain and use in your recipe.
1.5kg lean stewing beef
2 medium brown or white onions, chopped
2T finely chopped garlic
1T chopped galangal
6 fresh red chillies
400ml coconut milk
1t ground turmeric
2t chilli powder or to taste
3t ground coriander
1/2t ground ginger
1stalk fresh lenongrass, bruised
125ml tamarind liquid
Cut beef into strips and put into a large, heavy saucepan
Put onion, garlic, ginger, galangal, chillies and 1/2 cup water into blender, cover and blend until smooth.
Pour over meat and add all remaining ingredients except tamarind liquid and sugar.
Mix well and bring to the boil, uncovered.
Reduce heat to low, add tamarind liquid and simmer uncovered until gravy is thick, stirring occasionally.
Simmer for about 2 hours, stirring from time to time
Preserving pan or large saucepan and 3 x 500ml jars (sterilized)
Begin the night before - Skin mangoes and cut up and place inbowl. Sprinkle the sugar over the fruit and cover with clingfilm and place in fridge.
Next day - dry roast the cumin, coriander and cardomom pods in small frying pan. Then crush in pestle and mortar.
Next place mango, syrup and and all spices into pan. Bring upto simmer and let simmer for 3 hours, stirring from time to time, until the mango becomes translucent and the liquid has almost evaporated, leaving behind a thick syrup.
Remove from heat, let cool for 15 mins, then ladle into warm sterilized jars using a funnel. Seal whilst the chutney is still hot and label when cold.
Forget about it for 8 weeks to allow for maturation
We have a number of BBQ pits around the condo that we can use for a BBQ with friends. Gregg marinated the lamb that he had brought back from a trip to Melbourne.
I made mango and coconut icecream and made an ice bowl to serve it in. Simply place one bowl in another and fill space with water. I have added pureed mint to mine, but you can add cut up fruits or leaves to decorate. Wrap glad wrap (seran wrap) around bowls to keep in place and put in freezer.
I made Kashmiri Lamb Curry last night and the recipe is here. It's delicious and not too spicy. Add more chilli if you want it hotter.
Some of the key ingredients saffron, tumeric, star anise, chilli and cumin
Saffron giving both colour and flavour
Star Anise gives a liquorice flavour. Here you can see the seed pods and then finely ground star anise. Its very hard like cinnamon bark so I use a favourite gadget - my coffee grinder.
We keep this just for spices, especially very hard ones. There is nothing nicer that freshly ground spices - the smell is divine. I especially love grinding up my own spice mix for my Christmas cake... cinnamon and cloves. Mmm!
For other spices or making marinades I use a pestle and mortar
This is the beginning of an occasional series on Asian ingredients, my favourite Asian inspired recipes, handy kitchen gadgets and anything else that takes my fancy. If there is anything you would like me to write about let me know.
Singapore is the food hub of Asia, an eclectic mix of ethnic influences covering Malay, Chinese and Indian cuisines with a good dose of Japanese thrown in.
So first up we will explore Sweet, Sour, Salty and Hot - this is the basis for all Asian recipes.
Sweet -Palm Sugar
This comes in many forms and I am showing a dark large circular block, but I have seen them much paler and in small tablet form. I find using a microplaner a great tool to use to grate it. I am sure a regular grater would be fine too.
Salty - You will be familiar with Fish Sauce and Soya Sauces (sweet, dark, light, low salt) but not perhaps Kichap Manis a sweet dark soy sauce from Indonesia.
Sour - Coconut Vinegar, Black Vinegar, Tamarind (not shown) and Kaffir Lime
These kaffir limes and leaves have come straight from the freezer where you can store them. I use my microplaner again to zest the frozen limes and then pop them back in the freezer. The leaves should be folded in half with the stalk just ripped out leaving you two parts that you then very finely chop.
Hot - Chilli Pastes, Powder and Jams
We love this chilli jam- Reuben Solomon, husband of the cookery writer Charmaine. You dont need much and we mix it with a good mayo as a spread for sandwiches and wraps for an extra kick
Some of these ingredients will be used in the following recipe along with
Coconut Milk/Cream - this is an alkaline that removes some of the heat if there is too much heat and can cool the mouth
Pomelo - similar to a grapefuit, but much bigger and sweeter if its the pink thai version
So this week's recipe is one of my all time favs to start with. Its so simple to make and is a one bowl meal which is even better.
Smoked Trout and Pomelo Salad........see recipe here
Hope you enjoy
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