• David Hall

Beef Rendang

Simply one of the most amazing curries that you will ever taste. Coming from Malaysia, it is the perfect combination of flavours that make South East Asian food so amazing - hot, salty, sweet and sour. Enjoy.



Ingredients - Feeds 6

First of all, you need to get your head around the paste, the key to success for any decent curry. You can make it from scratch using all of the ingredients that I will list. Alternatively, visit your local Asian superstore who can provide you with a whole host of quality pastes which are really cost effective. Most major superstores stock quality ready-made pastes too. If you want to have a bash yourself, here's how to make 1 quantity of Rendang spice paste. Simple place it all in a food processor and blend until you have a fine paste. Make double the quantity and keep the rest in the freezer.


For the paste

100g grated coconut

8 red chillies (whole)

2 tbsp coriander seeds (toasted)

1 tsp ground turmeric

2 whole onions

6 cloves garlic

50g fresh ginger


2 tbsp sunflower or groundnut oil

1kg stewing steak (I like chuck steak) cut into large chunks

Rendang spice paste

2 tins of coconut milk

3 lemongrass stalks (whack them with the side of a knife to bruise them)

10 lime leaves or a nice substitute if you can't find any is to thinly peel a lime and place that in. I peel mine and keep it in a jar to dry.

1 tbsp fish sauce or a tsp salt

2 whole cinnamon sticks

1 tbsp tamarind paste

Fresh lime juice

Fresh coriander, roughly chopped


1 - Pre-heat the oven to 160C/GM3. Heat up the oil in a large pan. Quickly brown the meat all over until golden. Add the paste and stir fry for 2-3 minutes.

2 - Pour in the coconut milk, lemongrass, lime leaves or peel, cinnamon sticks, tamarind paste and fish sauce or salt. Bring to the simmer then pour into a casserole dish. Place on the middle shelf and cook for 2 hours, checking halfway through that it has not cooked dry. Add a little water if it is looking dry.

3 - Once cooked, remove the cinnamon sticks, lemongrass and lime peel. Taste for seasoning - you should have a salty, sweet, hot and sour sauce. Add lime juice and fish sauce/salt according to taste.

4 - Serve with plain boiled rice and fresh coriander. In my photo, I've served it with a simple cucumber salad which is deseeded, peeled and chopped cucumber tossed with lime juice, fish sauce, chopped red chilli and fresh coriander.

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