the appetizer:

Cook Indian dishes at home with Ruta Kahate's 5 Spices, 50 Dishes, including recipes like Sautéed Beets with Mustard and Lemon Juice, Anglo-Indian Beef Stir-Fry, and Shrikhand with Yogurt Cheese, Saffron, and Pistachios.



Anglo-Indian Beef Stir-Fry

Anglo-Indian Beef Stir-Fry
Anglo-Indian Beef Stir-Fry

Serves 4


The British, Dutch, French, and Portuguese all colonized parts of India. This mingling of cultures trickled down to their tables, and today's Anglo-Indian is totally comfortable serving roasts, stews, and pies (all influenced by local ingredients and spices) alongside dal, biryani, and chapati. Perhaps the most well-known Anglo-Indian dish is Mulligatawny soup, but this easy stir-fry is also a popular one. The recipe evolved as a way to make use of a leftover roast, so if you have some, feel free to substitute it here.

  • 1 pound beef sirloin or any other tender cut of beef,
  •      sliced against the grain into paper-thin slices
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground turmeric, divided
  • 2 medium russet potatoes
  • 6 tablespoons canola oil, divided
  • 1 medium yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced (about 1-1/2 cups)
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger (about 3-inch piece)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne

To make slicing the beef easier, freeze it for about 20 minutes. Or even better, have the butcher slice it for you at the store. Rub the beef slices with the vinegar, 1 teaspoon of the salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of the turmeric and set aside.

Bring the whole potatoes to a boil in lightly salted water to cover. Boil them for 5 minutes, then turn off the heat, cover, and let the potatoes sit in the hot water for 10 minutes. The potatoes will be perfectly cooked without being mushy. Drain, peel, and cut into 6 to 8 wedges each. Coat the wedges with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon turmeric and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Set aside.

Heat 3 tablespoons of the oil in a large wok and fry the onion and ginger until softened slightly. Add the cayenne and then the marinated beef. Stir-fry over high heat until tender, 5 to 8 minutes. Cooking time will vary depending on which cut of beef you've used and how thinly you've sliced it. If you find that the beef is not tender enough for your liking, add 1/2 cup water, cover, and cook on medium-low heat until the beef is very tender, about 15 minutes more.

Meanwhile, heat the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet and gently fry the potato wedges over low heat until golden brown and crisp. Serve the stir-fry garnished with the potato "chips." By the way, a true Anglo-Indian would serve tomato ketchup alongside!

  • from:
  • 5 Spices, 50 Dishes
    Simple Indian Recipes Using Five Common Spices
  • by Ruta Kahate
  • Photographs by Susie Cushner
  • Chronicle Books, 2007; $19.95
  • Paperback; 132 pp; 30 color photographs
  • ISBN 081185342X; ISBN13 9780811853422
  • Recipe reprinted by permission.

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5 Spices, 50 Dishes


This page created July 2007

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