Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Massaman Beef Curry

You know how sometimes you have a random television show on in the background, no one is watching the TV and you just haven't gotten around to turning it off yet but then something comes on and you think oh my goodness I'm so glad I saw this? No? Just me? Okay then.

That is exactly what happened one weekend. Some kind of sport was on the television and the game/match had ended and Weekend Extra was playing along in the background. I was about to turn it off when I heard the words slow cooker and massaman curry. I had to stick around after that.

D and I love our slowcooker. We don't use it very often as we still aren't convinced that it's safe to leave it on while we are at work, but we love it on weekends. Not only do we love our slowcooker, but we also love massaman curry.

This recipe is fantastic. I have never made massaman before, but after trying it this way and having it turn out so perfect I don't think I'll do it any other way. It's as easy as any slow cook meal, just add the ingredients, turn it on and at the end stir through some extra seasonings. It tasted as good as the massaman that comes from our favourite Thai restaurant.

Finishing it off with a splash of fish sauce, some sugar and lime juice was a definite must. They just gave it such a lift and lightness. I made mine a little more lime-y, I felt that it gave a really nice contrast to the creaminess of the rest of the dish. Note that the recipe uses tamarind, I didn't have any so I left it out.

Massaman Beef Curry
from Weekend Extra

750 g rump steak or lean topside
30 ml peanut oil
115g massaman paste
2 cans coconut milk
8 kaffir lime leaves
2 large potatoes (peeled, cut into 2 cm cubes)
2 tsp tamarind paste
100 g salted peanuts
2 limes (juice only), Asian fish sauce (Nam Pla) and white sugar to taste
¼ bunch Thai basil (for garnish)

Remove the fat from the beef and cut into 2 cm cubes

Place meat in a slow cooker and stir in the massaman paste so that all the meat cubes are covered

Add coconut milk, diced potatoes and lime leaves and turn on the slow cooker

Leave to cook for a few hours or until the beef is just tender

When cooked remove the lime leaves and add the tamarind paste. Stir in carefully

Then add ¾ of the peanuts

Finish the curry by balancing with the lime juice for extra sourness, the sugar for sweetness and season with the fish sauce

Serve accompanied with some steamed jasmine rice and garnish with the remaining peanuts and a bunch of Thai basil on top


  1. Sounds so good! And it's about two of my favourite things - slow cookers and massaman curry. Can't wait to try it out, thank you.

  2. Yum, thanks so much for sharing. I will try this ASAP. I love both my slow cooker and Massaman curry so I can't wait to see how it works out. Did you find that there was a lot of sauce - 2 cans of milk seems a lot for a crock.... I just want to make sure I get lots of flavour!

  3. It did turn out to be quite saucy. We fished out the beef and did have to throw out quite a bit of sauce. I think I will try and reduce the amount of coconut milk next time.