Beef Curry Dopiaza

The word dopiaza means double onion, and because I really love thick, spicy onions, it's what I always order in Indian restaurants. My recipe is not authentic, but I feel it is as good as any I've had.

Serves 4

This recipe is taken from How to Cook Book Two

Beef Curry Dopiaza
 2 lb (900 g) chuck steak, chopped into 1 inch (2.5 cm) pieces
 1 rounded teaspoon cumin seeds
 1 rounded teaspoon coriander seeds
 3 cardamom pods (whole)
 1 level teaspoon fennel seeds
 1 level teaspoon whole fenugreek (alternatively, use ground fenugreek)
 3 tablespoons groundnut or other flavourless oil
 1 lb (450 g) onions, peeled and sliced into half-moon shapes about ½ (1 cm) thick
 3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
 3 green chillies, deseeded and finely chopped
 1 level tablespoon ground turmeric
 1 level tablespoon freshly grated peeled root ginger
 2 medium tomatoes, skinned and chopped
 3 oz (75 g) creamed coconut
 5 fl oz (150 ml) natural yoghurt
 salt and freshly milled black pepper
To serve:
 juice 1 lime
 1 tablespoon chopped fresh coriander leaves

You will also need a lidded flameproof casserole with a capacity of 4 pints (2.25 litres).


First of all you need to roast the whole spices, and to do this place them in a small frying pan or saucepan over a medium heat and stir and toss them around for 1-2 minutes, or until they begin to look toasted and start to jump in the pan.

Now transfer them to a pestle and mortar and crush them to a powder.

Next place 2 tablespoons of the oil in the casserole over a high heat and, when it is really hot, brown the pieces of meat a few at a time.

Remove them to a plate, then add the rest of the oil and, when that's really hot, too, fry the onions till well browned – about 10 minutes – then add the garlic and chilli and cook for a further 2 minutes.

Next return the meat to the pan, add the crushed spices, fenugreek powder (if you were unable to buy it whole), turmeric, ginger and tomatoes and stir everything around.

Next grate the creamed coconut into a bowl and combine it with 10 fl oz (275 ml) boiling water using a whisk, then, when it has dissolved, pour it into the casserole, followed by the yoghurt and some seasoning.

Now bring the mixture up to a slow simmer, put the lid on the casserole and simmer very gently for 2 hours.

Just before serving, add the lime juice and sprinkle over the chopped fresh coriander.

Serve with spiced basmati rice and Fresh Coriander Chutney.

if you want to serve with plain basmati rice, see the related recipe below

Print Page