Typically in Jamaican cooking, beef isn’t usually paired with coconut and curry. However, cooking beef with coconut milk gives the final dish so much body. The gravy is creamy and smooth from the reduced coconut curry sauce. In my home we don’t eat beef very often, but when we do, I like to make it as tasty as possible.
Coconut curry beef is fantastic and delicious. It’s the perfect dish for for a family dinner or to impress your guests at your next dinner party.
For coconut curry beef, I’m using grass-feed beef chuck cut. It has enough fat to give this dish great flavor and keeps it tender. I cut my beef chuck in about 2 inch pieces so that it cooks up faster and the coconut milk helps to keep it tender. This cut of meat is also relatively affordable so if you’re on a budget like me, you can stick to your budget and still eat well.
Let’s Talk Curry Powder
There are a ton of varieties out there. But they all pretty much start with the basics; turmeric, coriander and cumin. They all have at least 3 or 4 other ingredients including all-spice/pimento, ground ginger, fenugreek, chili pepper, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, fennel, star anise, thyme, mustard seeds, bay leaves, and paprika. They’re all beautiful, warm and aromatic herbs and spices.
A good quality curry powder has a combination of the herbs and spices listed above, all natural ingredients and no additives or preservatives. Select a curry powder that has a combination of ingredients that are suitable to your taste buds . You can also be adventurous and make your own. I’ll put my homemade curry recipe in another post.
This dish starts with browning the beef to lock in the juices and give it a nice golden brown color. I then remove the beef, add the peppers, onion, ginger and garlic to the same pan and give it a few stirs before adding the curry powder. Finally I stir in the coconut milk, add back in the beef, simmer before adding the potatoes. Then simmer again on medium to low heat. Here is the full recipe and instructions.
Coconut Curry Beef
- Cast iron pot or large pot
- 2 lbs. Beef chuck cut into 2-inch pieces
- 3 Tbsp Curry powder
- 2 14-oz Cans unsweetened coconut milk
- 2 Tbsp Vegetable oil
- 2 Tbsp Butter
- 1 Medium Onion- thinly sliced
- 4 Cloves Garlic- finely chopped
- 1 Tbsp Ginger- finely chopped or grated
- 2 Small Bay leaves- optional
- 1 1/2 lbs. Yukon gold potatoes
- 1 Medium Sweet pepper- sliced
- Season beef with meat seasoning or salt and pepper. Heat oil to high heat and add pieces of the beef to the pot to brown. Brown beef in batches, over crowding the pot will lead to steaming and not browning. Cook beef until browned on all sides, 8–10 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
- Drain oil from the pot leaving about a tbsp of oil. Reduce heat to medium and add the butter, peppers, onion, garlic, and ginger. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring often and scraping up browned bits.
- Stir in curry powder and cook for another 3-5 minutes before adding bay leaves, coconut milk, and 1 cup water.
- Add back in the beef pieces. Season with salt, give it a quick stir and let it simmer for about 35-40 minutes or until beef is fork tender.
- Add Yukon potatoes, give it a quick stir and let it simmer for another 25 minutes. Stir it often to move the potatoes and beef around in the coconut curry sauce. Add a little water if the sauce gets too thick or dries out but the beef is not ready. Check the season and adjust salt if needed.
- Remove from the heat and serve immediately or let it cool a little.
- This dish is great with a side salad, rice, mashed potatoes or even baked sweet potatoes.