Beef Massaman Curry

Amy Massey
by Amy Massey
4 Servings
2 hr 15 min

The beef Massaman curry is a Thai curry like no other. This recipe consists of tender cubes of beef and a mix of white and sweet potatoes, slow cooked in a rich, aromatic, gravy-like curry sauce. The beef falls apart perfectly when cooked and the potatoes really take on the flavours of the curry.

First, a curry paste is made from fresh vegetables and toasted whole spices, before being cooked in a pot with creamy coconut milk and the beef and potatoes.

It is served with fresh coriander and toasted cashews crumbled on top.

Slow cooked beef and potatoes in an aromatic, spiced curry sauce.

The gravy-like curry is made with a blend of toasted whole spices.

Toasted cashew nuts crumbled on top.

Recipe details
  • 4  Servings
  • Prep time: 15 Minutes Cook time: 2.5 Hours Total time: 2 hr 15 min
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For the curry paste
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp cloves
  • 4 shallots, peeled and chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • Ginger, thumb size, peeled and chopped
  • 2 lemongrass stalks, trimmed and chopped
  • 1 lime, zested
  • 4 tbsp chilli sauce
  • Handful of coriander stalks
For the curry
  • 1kg stewing steak, diced
  • 2 tbsps oil
  • 4 shallots, peeled and sliced
  • 400ml coconut milk
  • 2 potatoes, peeled and quartered
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into large chunks
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp light soft brown sugar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Large handful raw cashew nuts
  • Large handful coriander leaves, roughly chopped
For the curry paste
Toast the whole spices in a frying pan until fragrant, transfer to pestle & mortar and grind until fine.
Heat a frying pan over a medium heat, add 1 tbsp of oil and gently fry the shallots, garlic, ginger & lemongrass until soft and golden.
Add the onion mix, spices & the rest of the curry paste ingredients to a blender and blend to a smooth paste.
For the curry
Heat a large, heavy sided pan and add the other tbsp of oil, brown the beef in batches and set aside.
Add the shallots and cook for 1 min until caramelised.
Add the curry paste and fry until fragrant & golden.
Pour in the coconut milk, mix well & simmer until reduced by a third.
Add the beef stock and return the beef to the pan.
Add the fish sauce, sugar, tamarind, bay leaves, cinnamon stick and a pinch of salt.
Bring to a boil, put the lid on & simmer for 1 hour on low.
Add the potatoes to the pan and continue to simmer, covered, for another hour.
Toast the cashews over a low heat in a frying pan, then lightly crush them in a pestle and mortar.
Serve over steamed jasmine rice, topped with cashews and coriander leaves.
  • For a meat-fred option, I think this recipe would be great with just the potatoes in it! Vegetarians would need to use an alternative to fish sauce, such as half the amount of light soy sauce.
Amy Massey
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