Thursday, April 12, 2007

Coconut Beef Curry

"This slow-cooker stew is perfect for family meals yet fancy enough for entertaining. Red curry paste is popular in Indian and Thai dishes and can be found in the Asian food section of the supermarket. If you can't find it, use curry powder instead. Serve with hot cooked couscous or basmati rice." So saith the intro to this amazing beef dish that I found in a Beef marketing pamphlet in the meat section at my grocery store. Try it. It's a little bit different, and just slightly exotic.

1 tablespoon (15 ml) vegetable/ canola oil
2 lb (1 kg) beef simmering steak (e.g. Cross Rib, Blade or Top Blade- although any beef roast or steak will do, including stewing beef)
2 onions, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons (30 ml) paprika
1 tablespoon (15 ml) ground cumin
2 teaspoons (10 ml) red curry paste (or 1 Tbsp/ 15 ml curry powder)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
4 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped (you could leave the peel on to add a bit of fibre)
1 lb (500 g) baby carrots, peeled (or regular carrots peeled and cut into chunks)
1 can (14 oz/ 398 ml) coconut milk (not sweet coconut cream)
2 tablespoons (30 ml) tomato paste
1 teaspoon (5 ml) salt
1/2 cup (125 ml) dried apricots, sliced
toasted silvered almonds or chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

1. Heat oil over medium-high heat in large nonstick skillet. In batches, cook beef strips for 2 to 3 minutes or until browned. Add onions, garlic, paprika, cumin, curry paste and cinnamon; saute for 2 minutes or until fragrant.

2. Transfer mixture to 14- 24 cup (3.5 -6 L) slow cooker; stir in potatoes, carrots, coconut milk, tomato paste, salt and 1/2 cup (125 ml) water.

3. Cook, covered, on low for 8 to 10 hours or high for 4 to 6 hours or until bubbling and vegetables are tender. Stir in apricots; cook for 15 minutes. Serve sprinkled with almonds or cilantro if desired.

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