I love being inspired by the dishes that I have been watching on Aarti Party’s food show. All of her dishes that she makes are quite exotic and seem easy enough to prepare. It’s like she has unlocked my inner love for Indian food and I practically drool whenever I see the plated dishes. I instantly fell in love with this beef vindaloo because of the aromatic flavors and spices of this dish. I have made Aarti’s Indian naan pizza, and Bombay sloppy joes, and everything turned out pretty delicious. This dish reminded me of Thai beef curry which I love enjoying as well.
When you taste this beef vindaloo it’s aromatic and complex flavors seem very familiar because Goan cuisine blends Arabian, Portuguese and local flavors. The mixtures of the spices of cumin, cinnamon, turmeric, paprika, ginger and garlic are intensified when you toast and grind the spices together. Plus, the caramelized onions brings a deep richness to the stew. You can tame the heat by cutting back on the Serrano peppers or add more if you like. My husband enjoyed the pairing of cucumber raita and wanted a bowl of it all to himself. Something so simple to make can really taste so good, he said this stuff is comparable to tzatziki. The sweetness of the golden raisins-cucumber mixture complemented the heat of the stewed beef vindaloo really well. Enjoy!
Goan Beef Curry with Vinegar: Beef Vindaloo
Adapted from Aarti Sequeira
Wet Masala (Spice Blend):
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 cinnamon sticks, broken
6 whole cloves
4 whole black peppercorns
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons paprika
½ teaspoon cayenne
1 heaping tablespoon Ginger Garlic paste or (6 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped & 1-inch thumb fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped)
½ cup apple cider vinegar
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 medium red onions, sliced very thinly
1 Serrano pepper, sliced in half
2 pounds boneless beef top sirloin, trimmed of all excess fat, cut into 1-inch cubes
kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
Ginger-Garlic Paste - In a small food processor, add the garlic, ginger and canola oil and process until it forms a paste.
Prepare the wet masala. In a small skillet over medium heat toast the cumin seeds, cinnamon stick, cloves, and peppercorns until fragrant, less than 1 minute. Pour into a spice grinder and process until powdered. Using a small food processor, combine the toasted spice mixture and the rest of the wet masala ingredients and mix until smooth.
In a large skillet over medium heat, add the canola oil. Sauté the onions and Serrano pepper until translucent and tender. Add the ground wet masala mixture and stir until combined. Add the meat cubes and stir until combined. Cook for 5 minutes until the meat has browned.
Add a cup of hot water to the small food processor to swirl the leftover masala and add it to the skillet. Add salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Bring it to a low simmer and cover and cook for 30 minutes. Lift the cover and move it ajar and cook for another 10 minutes to let the curry thicken. Taste for seasonings and add salt and pepper if needed.
Serve with rice or with chapatis (whole wheat griddle bread). Garnish with chopped green onions if desired.
Yield: 6 servings
Nutritional Factor: Calories: 363; Sugar: 0; Carbs: 5g; Fiber: 2g: Fat: 26g
Cucumber Raita: Indian Cucumber & Yogurt Salad
Adapted from Aarti Sequeria
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 cup sour cream
2 cups grated English or Persian cucumber (unpeeled)
1 clove garlic, minced
4 sprigs fresh mint, leaves only, minced finely
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons golden raisins
Freshly ground black pepper
Whisk the yogurt and sour cream until smooth. Add the rest of the ingredients, plus a little freshly ground black pepper if you like. Stir, chill, and serve.
Review: Definitely a taste sensation and well-enjoyed by the both of us. I had a difficult time preparing the chapatis and I didn’t find them to puff up as a flat bread would. Instead, I had a back-up plan of already made garlic naan from TJ’s and a batch of basmati rice. I recommend making both dishes of beef vindaloo and cucumber raita together.