Beef Rendang


  • 2 cups shredded coconut to make the kerisik (toasted coconut)
  • 2 teaspoons tamarind pulp (soaked in some warm water for the juice and discard the 1 1/4 pounds beef stew meat (or boneless beef short ribs), cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 6 kaffir lime leaves (very finely sliced)
  • 1 cinnamon stick (about 2-inch long)
  • 3 cloves
  • 3 star anise
  • 3 cardamom pods
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 8 cups water

Spice Paste (blended)

  • 20 shallots
  • 2 tablespoons coriander
  • 1 tablespoon fennel
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon pepper
  • 3 star anise
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 15 inches dried chilies (soaked warm water and seeded)
  • 1 inch ginger
  • 3 lemon grass
  • 1 inch galangal


  1. Heat the shredded coconut in a dry wok, stirring continuously until golden brown. Set aside to cool.
  2. Chop the spice paste ingredients and then blend it in a food processor or blender until fine.
  3. Heat the oil in a stew pot, add the spice paste, cinnamon, cloves, star anise, and cardamom and stir-fry them until aromatic.
  4. Add beef; cook over a medium heat for a further 3 to 4 minutes, or until meat is browned.
  5. Add the coconut milk, tamarind juice, water, and simmer on medium heat, stirring frequently until the meat is almost cooked.
  6. Add the kaffir lime leaves, kerisik (toasted coconut), brown sugar, stirring to blend well with the meat.
  7. Lower the heat to low, cover the lid, and simmer for 1 – 1 1/2 hours or until the meat is really tender and the gravy has dried up.
  8. Add salt to taste.

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August 2017
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