Slow Cooker Beef Madras

You know that time when you are really wanting some great Indian food, and wanting that great curry gravy? Yeah, I had one of those moments recently, and I was glad that I did! The most recent dish I made is called beef madras. It is essentially an Indian style curry made with beef, but this time I decided to prepare everything in advance, and let it cook in a slow cooker for about 8 hours until the beef was fall apart tender. This beef madras is loaded with awesome flavor, dark in color, rich, and just warms the soul. I was a bit skeptical if my kids were going to eat this, but you know what, they devoured it! All of it. That’s always a great thing.

Slow Cooker Beef Madras Sandwich Recipe
Slow Cooker Beef Madras Sandwich Recipe

Yes, I turned my beef madras into a sandwich, but traditionally it is served on a bed of rice, of which my kids could not get enough of. Your choice, but whatever route you go with, it’s going to be a great route, trust me.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs cubed beef
  • 4 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 large red onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 whole roma tomatoes, chopped
  • .8 oz curry powder (yes, I used store bought, don’t judge me)
  • 1 tsp red chili flakes
  • 1/2 tbsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp salt, adjust to taste
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste
  • 3 cups beef stock
  • French baguette, optional
  • cooked jasmine rice
  • fresh onion, sliced, optional
  • fresh cilantro, chopped, optional

This sounds like a lot, but it is really a quick throw together meal, and after some initial stove work, it all gets dumped into your slow cooker, and then you can walk away only to be bombarded by some awesome smells through the day until you are ready to eat.

Let’s get going.

Start by heating a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add in half of the oil, and let it come to temperature. Once heated, add in the onion, and give a good stir. Once the onions soften, about 6 minutes or so, add in the garlic, tomatoes, and once you get that great aroma from the garlic, add in chili flakes, curry powder, salt, pepper, cumin, and ginger. Give this a good stir, and cook the seasonings for a few minutes.

Remove the mixture to a plate, and set to the side.

Beef Madras Ingredients
Beef Madras Ingredients

Rinse out your skillet, and return back to the stove.  Add the remaining oil, and keep the heat on medium-high.

Season the cubed beef with some salt, then add the cubed beef to the skillet. Your goal here is to brown the beef, not fully cook it. Once browned, add the onion and seasoning mixture back to the beef mixture, give a good stir, then add the beef stock. Stir again, then add everything to your slow cooker.

Cover, and cook on the low setting, and cook for 8 hours or longer if you desire. Stir along the way.

Now when you are ready to serve, take some rice and place into a bowl, then ladle in the beef madras. Top with fresh cilantro and onion if you desire.

The result is nothing short of fantastic. The beef is super tender, and that curry gravy will have you coming back for more. Again, I was really surprised watching my kids devour the beef madras. They came back for seconds, they loved it that much, and for me, well, I made the sandwich, and there was something about it. It almost reminded me of a beef au jus. That gravy set into the baguette, and made it that much more special. This is a real winner if you are into a great beef curry. Hope you enjoy!

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Caribbean Style Pork

I am still working my way through my habanero peppers, and yes, that can take quiet a bit of time. A little goes a long way. As you know, I recently batched out a bunch of mango and peach habanero sauce that I am still hammering through, and day by day it just gets better and better. But as I was still staring down my bag of peppers, I decided to come up with a Caribbean style pork recipe that had that subtle kick of the habanero peppers, but one that it was not too overpowering. This pork dish is bright, vibrant, and packed full of a citrus punch that is a bit addicting.

Caribbean Style Pork Recipe
Caribbean Style Pork Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 nectarines, juiced
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded, and chopped
  • 1 whole white onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 whole habanero peppers, seeds and stem removed, chopped
  • 2 whole sprigs of thyme
  • 1 cup of fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar
  • 8 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 1/4 tbsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 lbs pork tenderloin, cut into thick chunks
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • cooked rice, optional

Start by making the marinade. To a bowl, add in the nectarine, lemon, and lime juice. Season with the salt, pepper, onion, habaneros, bell pepper, thyme, parsley, garlic, worcestershire, oil, and vinegar. Add in the pork, and carefully toss. Careful of those habanero peppers. I always recommend wearing gloves when using those. Once everything is coated, marinate overnight.

Caribbean Style Pork Recipe
Caribbean Style Pork Recipe

The following day, remove the marinated pork from the refrigerator and let it rest on the counter to come up to room temperature.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place the pork mixture into a baking dish, seal with aluminum foil, and cook for about 2 hours, or until it is super tender. Uncover, crank up the heat to about 425, and cook a few additional minutes to get a bit crispy.

Remove from the oven, and serve over rice, if desired. Feel free to drizzle any of the remaining liquid over the pork, along with the cooked onions, garlic, and peppers.  This one is a real winner. It has an awesome citrus, and bang of the habanero that is just perfect. Hope you enjoy!

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Mixed Vegetable Curry

My wife and I are hooked on a local Indian restaurant known as India Garden. I have mentioned this in the past when we first tried their lunch buffet and my wife fell in love with their coconut soup, so much in love that I recreated it for her. So with any restaurant that we fall in love with, we typically give it another chance to see if it stood up against the first time. The verdict. It did. This place was packed, and as they offered the usual suspects (butter chicken, curries, etc), their buffet was not the same as the first visit. That, I liked. They offered these great steamed breads that were lightly packed with potatoes, along with various chutneys, and then this mixed vegetable curry that my wife fell in love with.

Mixed Vegetable Curry Recipe
Mixed Vegetable Curry Recipe

As my wife dissected this curry, I decided that I would give a stab at it and eat it throughout the week for lunch, or dinner. As my wife stated it could have been spicier, I decided to leave out a lot of the chili as I did not want it to be that hot that my wife and kids could not eat. With that said, bump up the chili factor to your liking.

It’s a great side dish, or great dish for meatless Mondays, and is loaded with awesome vegetables.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 1/2 red onion, rough chop
  • 1/2 head of cauliflower, cleaned, florets and stems are fine
  • 4 small carrots, cleaned and roughly chopped
  • 2 whole tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 russet potato, cubed
  • 1 small head of broccoli, florets and stems
  • 1 green chili, whole (more or chopped for more heat)
  • 2 whole broccoli leaves (optional if you have them in your garden), thinly sliced
  • 1/2 whole lime, juiced
  • 2 cups of chicken stock
  • 13 oz of coconut milk
  • 3 tbsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp asafoetida powder, or hing powder
  • 4-6 curry leaves, optional
  • 1 tsp salt, to taste
  • 1/2 cup of frozen peas
  • jasmine rice, cooked (optional), or some style of Indian bread (naan, paratha)

Start by heating a large skillet, one that will hold all of this mixture. Turn the heat to medium, then add in your oil and let it come to temperature. Once the oil is heated, add in the onions, and cook for about 7 minutes, or until they soften. Next, toss in the ginger and garlic and give this a good stir.

This is when I like to add the curry powder. I like to cook the curry powder for a minute or two in this mixture before adding the remaining ingredients.

Stir the curry powder for a couple of minutes, then add in the broccoli leaves, cauliflower, carrots, and potatoes. Give this a good stir. Squeeze the lime juice in, then add in the chili, tomatoes, and broccoli florets.

Mixed Vegetable Curry Ingredients
Mixed Vegetable Curry Ingredients

Add the chicken stock, as well as the coconut milk, and bring to a gentle boil. Once boiling, add in the hing powder, garam masala, and curry leaves. Give a good stir, reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook until your vegetables are cooked. I like mine with just a bit a snap left to them, but if you prefer them softer, feel free to cook a bit longer.

The sauce should thicken, and once that happens, add in the frozen peas, turn off the heat, and get ready for a great mixed vegetable curry.

First there is nothing visually stunning about this recipe, however on first bite, I think you will agree that it is extremely comforting. I can tell now why my wife loved it so much.

This curry, again, is not overly spicy so it’s perfect for any gathering, and a great vegetable dish to serve at any party, that is if you love the wonderful curry flavor of Indian food.  Hope you enjoy!

Mixed Vegetable Curry
Author: 
Recipe type: Indian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • ½ red onion, rough chop
  • ½ head of cauliflower, cleaned, florets and stems are fine
  • 4 small carrots, cleaned and roughly chopped
  • 2 whole tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 russet potato, cubed
  • 1 small head of broccoli, florets and stems
  • 1 green chili, whole (more or chopped for more heat)
  • 2 whole broccoli leaves (optional if you have them in your garden), thinly sliced
  • ½ whole lime, juiced
  • 2 cups of chicken stock
  • 13 oz of coconut milk
  • 3 tbsp curry powder
  • ½ tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp asafoetida powder, or hing powder
  • 4-6 curry leaves, optional
  • 1 tsp salt, to taste
  • ½ cup of frozen peas
  • jasmine rice, cooked (optional), or some style of Indian bread (naan, paratha)
Instructions
  1. Start by heating a large skillet, one that will hold all of this mixture. Turn the heat to medium, then add in your oil and let it come to temperature. Once the oil is heated, add in the onions, and cook for about 7 minutes, or until they soften. Next, toss in the ginger and garlic and give this a good stir.
  2. This is when I like to add the curry powder. I like to cook the curry powder for a minute or two in this mixture before adding the remaining ingredients.
  3. Stir the curry powder for a couple of minutes, then add in the broccoli leaves, cauliflower, carrots, and potatoes. Give this a good stir. Squeeze the lime juice in, then add in the chili, tomatoes, and broccoli florets.
  4. Add the chicken stock, as well as the coconut milk, and bring to a gentle boil. Once boiling, add in the hing powder, garam masala, and curry leaves. Give a good stir, reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook until your vegetables are cooked. I like mine with just a bit a snap left to them, but if you prefer them softer, feel free to cook a bit longer.
  5. The sauce should thicken, and once that happens, add in the frozen peas, turn off the heat, and get ready for a great mixed vegetable curry.

 

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Filipino Kare-Kare

I’ve been married to my wife now for a couple of handful of years, and as she is from Filipino descent, I feel like I’ve only skimmed the surface of Filipino cuisine. I’ve tinkered with giniling, adobo, afritada, lechon manok, the torta, chicharrones with rice, lumpia shanghai, and even a take on sisig, but there is one thing I haven’t tried yet, and that is kare-kare.  You see, my father-in-law is from a province from the Philippines known as Papanga, and they are known for their cooking, and one of their traditional dishes is kare-kare.

Kare-kare is essentially a stew, typically made with oxtail, however other variations do exist. Now I’ve purchased oxtail for my father-in-law in the past, typically from my local Mexican supermarket, but I’ve never smelled, nor tasted this authentic Filipino stew. So as I was at the market a few weeks back, I saw some folks buying oxtail in bulk, and that led me to some interest. I moseyed over there and asked how they were going to make those oxtails. They politely said, that they braise them and serve them with vegetables. That sparked that idea of making kare-kare, and that’s when it began.

Filipino Kare-Kare Recipe

Let’s get started.

Now, let me state that not only was this awesome, but I got two thumbs up, with almost a bit of a giggle (because it was that good) from my father-in-law. That meant a lot to me. I also would state that you can go a number of different ways with kare-kare, but this was my take on it.

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs oxtail, cut into 1 inch rounds
  • 1/2 lb beef tripe, cleaned, roughly chopped
  • 10 cups of water
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 1 bundle of snake beans, or green beans cut into 3 inch segments
  • 5 baby bok choy, rinsed
  • 4 baby Asian egg plant, cut in half
  • 3 whole carrots, trimmed, and cut in half
  • 1/4 cup of toasted, ground rice
  • 1 tbsp black peppercorns
  • 1 whole bay leaf
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 heaping tbsp peanut butter
  • 2 heaping tbsp roasted bagoong (shrimp paste)
  • 1 tbsp annatto powder
  • 2 tbsp canola oil

Start by adding water to a large soup pot. Add in the oxtail, and bring to a boil. When the scum comes to the surface, skim with a large spoon and discard. Continue boiling until all of the scum is removed, about 3 hours or so.

Next add in the tripe, black peppercorns, fish sauce, and bay leaf. Continue to cook at a low boil for about 1 hour, then remove from the stove and let it cool to room temperature. Once cooled, cover, and place in the refrigerator overnight.

Ingredients for making kare-kare

Now you might be wondering why I put it in the refrigerator overnight. I do this, not only because my mother-in-law recommended it, but I knew that it was going to have fat from the oxtail that would surface, and I wanted to remove that for a cleaner stew.

So the next day, remove the pot from the refrigerator and remove the 1 inch hardened fat that surfaced.

Return the stock pot back to the stove, and bring to a medium heat.

The next couple of steps will get you to have a few pans on the stove. Once your stew comes back to a simmer, remove the oxtail from it and place them on a plate.

Next, heat up a small skillet on medium heat, and add in the oil, and the annatto powder. This gives the great color to the kare-kare. Bring to a gentle simmer, then add in the onions and garlic, cooking for about 5 minutes, then add the annatto oil mixture to the stock and give it a good stir.

Add in the roasted shrimp paste as well as the peanut butter and toasted rice. Give another good stir, and continue to simmer the stock.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Drizzle a bit of oil onto the carrots and egg plants, and cooke until tender, about 30 minutes.

Filipino Kare-Kare Recipe

Next, get a stock pot out and add with water, about half way up. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, add in the snake beans, and cook for a few minutes. Once cooked, add them to a bowl of ice water to blanch them. Strain and reserve them for later use.

Do the same with the bok choy.

To a large skillet, bring it to a medium-high heat, and add the oxtail. Brown both sides, and then return them back to the stock.

Now you are ready to serve.

Some will cook the vegetables in the stock, and I went a different route as suggested by our cousin in California. My father-in-law said this is ‘fancy’ kare-kare. I’ll take that.

When you are ready to plate, again, you can go a couple of different routes. I plated mine, arranging the oxtail and tripe, near the rice and array of vegetables, ladling the awesome sauce over the top. However you can add everything to a serving bowl, excluding the rice, mix, and serve. It’s entirely up to you.

Kare-Kare Recipe

When I offered my plating to my father-in-law, I think he was in a bit of shock. Not only how I performed with the classic Papangan kare-kare recipe, but how it was plated. He called me later in the day, thanking me of a job well done. Now I know what kare-kare is, and how awesome this stew was. By the way, have no fear of the oxtail or tripe. It’s a winning combination that will have you wanting more and more.

I hope you enjoy, and I hope to offer you a lot more Filipino recipes in the future.

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