We have a lovely lady who comes around the offices at work at a lunch time selling soups, sandwiches and salads. Her soups are amazing and always full of different flavours. One day the soup on the menu was a Malaysian Beef Rendang soup and after tasting its amazing flavours I decided I had to try and adapt her recipe and make my own low sp version but in curry form!
The ingredients list might look a bit long but in reality, it’s made up of a lot of things you will probably already have in your store cupboard or larder and it can be as quick or lengthy to make as the time you have to make it.
I’ve made it with beef , chicken and prawns and its delicious with either way. I tend to go with the prawn version if I need a lower pp dinner that day, if I’m in a rush or if I forget to defrost my beef but I’ve included instructions for both so choose which ever takes your fancy.
It’s a delicious dish and a bit different to your usual coconut milk based curries. The lime gives it a lovely tang so serving the final dish with a little slice really adds to the dish. I’ve included the sp’s for the curry alone but I would suggest serving it with 60g of basmati rice per person. This will take the total to 14sp for the beef dish and 13sp each for the prawns.
Serves 4 = 8sp each for Beef or 7sp each for Chicken/Prawn curry
Large bunch of coriander, stalks removed (reserve a little to garnish)
2 lemongrass stalks, woody base removed and finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, peeled
2 red onions, roughly chopped
Thumb sized piece of ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
2 red chillies, roughly chopped
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 tbsp ground coriander
Small grating of nutmeg
400ml tin of half fat coconut milk (I use Blue Dragon)
250ml chicken stock (made with one stock cube)
4 kaffir lime leaves (fresh if you can get them but dried are just as nice)
1 cinnamon stick
1 tbsp soft light brown sugar
Juice and a little of the zest of 1 lime, another half a lime for serving if you fancy
2 tbsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp fish sauce (optional if you have it)
1 tsp salt, plus extra to season
Ground black pepper
If you are using beef you will need 400g Lean Beef steak, diced for four people. This will take the total for the curry to 8sp per person.
If you are using chicken/prawns this will bring the sp down. Using 400g Prawns for 4 people will make the curry 7sp per person. Alternatively you could use 2 x 165g uncooked chicken breast or 200g cooked chicken breast meat for 7sp.
Pop your coriander, lemongrass, onions, garlic, ginger and chillies into your food processor and whizz into a fine paste (I add up to 100ml of cold water to help combine the paste). Then pop the paste into a pan and fry gently for a few minutes. To the paste add the cumin, coriander, nutmeg and turmeric and keep cooking for another few minutes.
If you are using beef/chicken add it at this point and coat in your paste. Cook until the meat is browned on the outside (6-7 minutes). Next, whether you are using beef or not, add your coconut milk, 250ml vegetable stock, fish sauce, lime leaves, lime juice and zest, cinnamon stick, sugar, soy sauce and salt. Give a good stir and then simmer until the meat is cooked through. The longer you can simmer it for the better as the flavours really develop but it usually takes at least about half an hour for my beef to cook through. You could also whack it in the slow cooker for a few hours if you fancy.
Often however, I don’t have time for that and I simply simmer until the beef is cooked through. Then a few minutes before serving, throw in a few generous handfuls of spinach, season with salt and pepper and stir again.
If you aren’t using beef add your prawns at the same point as you add the spinach and simmer until prawns are cooked through.
Take out the cinnamon stick and lime leaves just before dishing up and serve with a nice portion of basmati rice. Pop a slice of lime on the side and a little coriander on top to garnish!