If you’re after a rich and hearty winter warmer, with a kick of spice and a comforting creaminess, this slow braised beef and squash curry is the recipe for you. Cook a batch and you’ll feed 4 hungry people, or scale it up – it freezes very well.
Slow cooking fatty cuts of beef allows them to break down, with their fats caramelising and adding a richness to the curry. This recipe takes that concept, and adds warming, satisfying squash and a range of Indian spices.
- 700g fatty beef, such as shin or chuck
- 1 large carrot
- 2 sticks of celery
- 1 large onion
- 3 cloves of garlic
- one scotch bonnet chilli pepper
- 1 thumb sized piece of ginger
- 2 tbsp rich curry powder
- 1.5 tbsp garam masala
- 2 tins of chopped tomatoes.
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 beef stock cubes
- 3tbsp fresh coriander
I like to chop everything in advance of this meal, as it can be thrown together quite quickly once you get cooking. Chop the ingredients as follows:
Finely sliced: Celery, onion,
Thickly Sliced: Carrots, chilli, garlic
Big Chunks (around an inch cubed): Squash, beef
- Set the oven to 150 degrees celsius, then heat up 2 tbsp of olive oil at a high heat in a deep-bottomed, ovenproof dish. Once the oil is roasting hot, add the beef and stir regularly, until it is browned all over, then set aside.
- Turn down the heat to medium, then quickly, before the residual oil and beef can burn, throw in your carrots, onions, celery, garlic, chilli and again stir quickly.
- Fry it like this for around 5 minutes, then add your curry powders. These will quickly dry out, but it’s important to get them directly on the heat. Have some boiling water on hand for if it looks like it’s going to burn. After another 2 or 3 minutes, add your chopped tomatoes, as well as the beef stock cubes. Also, chuck in around 500ml of boiling water at this point.
- We’re nearly ready to add the meal to the oven. Throw in the squash and beef, and make sure that they are well covered with the liquid, which shouldn’t be much thicker than water at this point.
- Now, pop it in the oven with the lid off, and cook for at least 4 hours. Stir it occasionally, so that the beef doesn’t burn as it starts poking through. You’ll know it’s done when it is a very thick consistency, just thicker than a standard curry.
- Now, remove the pot from the oven, and add a tin of coconut milk, along with all the coriander. This should return it to the consistency of a normal curry.
- If you find that it’s a little thin for your liking, cook it for more time in the oven.
- Serve with rice, or for an interesting twist, rice noodles.