Beef and Aubergine Curry


serves 6
120 ml (4 fl oz) 1/2 cup sunflower oil
2 onions, thinly sliced
2.5 cm (1 in) fresh root ginger, sliced and cut in matchsticks
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 fresh red chillies, seeded and very finely sliced
2.5 cm (1 in) fresh turmeric, peeled and crushed, or 5 ml (1 tsp) ground turmeric
1 lemon grass stem, lower part sliced finely, top bruised
675 g (1 1/2 lb) braising steak, cut in even-size strips
400 ml (14 fl oz) can coconut milk
300 ml (1/2 pint) 1 1/4 cups water
1 aubergine, sliced and patted dry
5 ml (1 tsp) tamarind pulp, soaked in 60 ml (4 tbsp) warm water
salt and freshly ground black pepper
finely sliced chilli and deep-fried onions, to garnish
boiled rice, to serve


1. Heat half the oil and fry the onions, ginger and garlic until they give off a rich aroma. Add the chillies, turmeric and the lower part of the lemon grass. Push to one side and then turn up the heat and add the steak, stirring until the meat changes colour.

2. Add the coconut milk, water, lemon grass top and seasoning to taste. Cover and simmer gently for 1 1/2 hours, or until the meat is tender.

3. Towards the end of the cooking time heat the remaining oil in a
frying pan. Fry the aubergine slices
until brown on both sides.

4. Add the browned aubergine slices to the beef curry and cook for a further 15 minutes. Stir gently from time to time. Strain the tamarind and stir the juice into the curry. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Put into a warm serving dish. Garnish with the sliced chilli and deep-fried onions and serve with boiled rice.

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