Beef rendang

We come back to Asia. We will cook a delicious Rendang. A curry-like dish popular in Indonesia and Malaysia. We will need time to cook it and we will have to do it slowly but the result is great.
In fact Rendang is not a curry. The secret of Rendang is to cook it slowly and get rid off most of the liquid.
Let’s make it.


3 tablespoons flake unsweetened coconut
½ pound beef, cut into little cubes
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
½ cup chopped onion or shallot
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
3 dried red chilli peppers
1 tablespoon lemon grass (from a tube, or use fresh if you can get it)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon sugar
Some salt, to taste
3 cloves
½ cinnamon stick
1 cup coconut milk
Some water

First we will dry-roast the flake unsweetened coconut in a wok. We will stir continuously being careful so that we do not burn the coconut. When the coconut is golden brown, we will reserve the coconut.
Next we will take a food processor and we will blend the onion or shallot, the ginger, the garlic, the chilli peppers and the lemon grass. We must get a paste. We will reserve it.
Now we will grind the cumin, the fennel, the coriander and the nutmeg in a mortar.
And now we will take the wok and we will start cooking the paste from the food processor. You do not need to use too much oil. In a couple of minutes we can add the spices from the mortar. It is important to be stirring continuously. Cook for three minutes. Then, we will add the beef and let it cook for some minutes over medium heat till it gets browned. Now we will add the sugar, the cloves, the cinnamon stick, the coconut milk and the roasted coconut. We will bring to a boil, lower the heat and let it simmer. We can add some water if we see that the beef needs it to be cooked properly. Our Beef Rendang will be ready when the beef is tender and the liquid is almost gone. It is a slow process, give it one hour at least. Remember we must be simmering it. You can serve it with some rice and steamed vegetables. Really good.