Madras recipes are most often associated with heat usually emanating from the dried and green chillies added. Each spice used, lends its distinct aromas thereby making the dish burst with flavours. This Madras curry is pretty versatile as you can replace beef with lamb or pork too.
Though pungent, the combination of the different spices used, makes this beef Madras curry recipe actually quite delicious. Generally, the spices are first dry roasted to release their flavours and then ground to a fine powder like consistency. There are different versions of this dish. An authentic one usually incorporates the following blend of spices:
Coriander is extensively used to flavour curries. This recipe uses this spice in both, its fresh and whole forms. Coriander leaves are used towards the end of the cooking process, to garnish the dish. Coriander seeds are plump and brown in colour. They have a hollow cavity bearing essential oils which get released once roasted and ground. These seeds also have health benefits as they help tackle diabetes, ease digestion, facilitate hair growth and keep a check on cholesterol levels.
These are actually a dried berry. It is recommended that you buy whole peppercorns and crush them at home. This will ensure they last longer and retain their flavour. Store them in an airtight container in a cool, dry and dark place. This spice helps relieve colds and cough, stimulates digestion and enables weight loss.
In size and shape, they resemble cumin but, fennel is a different spice altogether that adds a nice punch to the beef Madras curry recipe. In addition, it helps regulate blood pressure, reduces water retention, helps purify blood and improves eyesight.
Fenugreek seeds have a somewhat bitter taste. While cooking, it is often included as an ingredient in spice blends. Fenugreek has numerous health benefits like it improves digestive problems and cholesterol levels, reduces inflammation, increases ones appetite and helps improve blood sugar.
This aromatic spice found in whole and ground forms, is used to season both savoury and sweet dishes. Cloves contain fibre, vitamins and minerals so besides adding flavour to your food, they also provide important nutrients. They are low in calories and high in antioxidants.
Dried Red Chillies
Dried chillies are extensively used as a spice in curried dishes. It is also used as an ingredient in curry powder and in seasonings. Each chilly has its distinct flavour and heat intensity. Combining chillies in a dish can increase their flavour complexity. Some chillies when consumed, produce sharp sensations at the back of the throat while others ignite a lingering low intensity burning sensation on the tongue.
Savouring this spicy concoction with rice and yoghurt, will help soothe your palate.