Beefy tales | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 04, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 10:39 AM, September 04, 2018

recipes from siam

Beefy tales


Ingredients for beef

500g beef shin

2 tbsp thick, sweet soya sauce

1/3 cup oil

5 cloves of garlic, peeled

2 inch piece of ginger, peeled

2 coriander roots (big), scraped and cleaned 

1 red onion (small)

50ml rice vinegar

3 tbsp sugar

1/3 cup oyster sauce

3 cups chicken stock

3 tbsp black Chinese vinegar

1 tsp sea salt

Ingredients for the herbs salad

3 tbsp fresh lemon juice

½ tsp ground black pepper

1 tbsp fish sauce

1 tbsp finely sliced green chilli

¼ cup chopped coriander leaves

1 tbsp chopped mint leaves

1 tbsp spring onion, finely shredded

1 tbsp sliced shallots

1 tbsp deseeded and finely sliced spur chillies


For the beef, rub thick sweet soya sauce all over the meat. Heat a little oil in a pan and seal the pot on all sides. Place in a deep braising dish.

Pound garlic, ginger, coriander root and onion to a paste.

Heat some oil in a heavy-based saucepan and fry the pounded ingredients until golden brown. Discard excess oil and deglaze with rice vinegar. Add sugar, oyster sauce and chicken stock. Bring to a boil and skim off all the foam. Pour liquid over the beef. Cover with foil, and braise on the stove over low heat for 1½ hours or until the meat is soft.

Remove meat and set aside. Strain the liquid; boil hard and reduce by a third. Add vinegar and salt to taste.

The mixture should taste rich and meaty.

To prepare the salad, combine lemon juice, ground pepper, fish sauce and chillies. This dressing should taste hot and sour. In a stainless-steel bowl, toss together the rest of the ingredients and add the dressing.

To serve, cut the braised beef into ½-inch slices and reheat in the reduced braising liquid. Place sliced beef in the middle of the serving bowl, and pour over a generous amount of the liquid. Place herb salad on top of the beef, and pour some of the dressing into the meat juices. Serve with steaming rice. 

Note — braised beef can be prepared a day before. 



¼ cup oil

4 eggs, beaten

2 cups beef 'jhura'

½ cup crabmeat, cooked 

1 tbsp oil

2 tbsp sliced onions

1 tbsp diced tomatoes

2 tsp sliced green chillies

Salt (just a pinch)

1 tsp soya sauce

½ tsp white pepper, grounded

1 tsp sea salt

2 tsp ginger, peeled and finely sliced

½ cup spring onion, cut into fine rounds

1 tbsp tomatoes, diced

1 cup fresh bean sprouts


For the crabmeat, heat 1 tablespoon oil in a pan. Fry 2 tablespoons sliced onions and 2 tablespoons sliced chillies under the mixture releases the aroma. Now add the crabmeat. Season with ½ teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon soya sauce. Fry for 5 minutes and remove from heat.

For the omelette, heat ¼ cup oil in a non-stick pan until just smoking; now add the beaten eggs. The mixture will bubble around the edges. Gently move the egg with a spatula to help cook the egg. Add the rest of the ingredients in the middle of the egg being cooked. Once done, push it down with a spatula and the egg will ooze out towards the edges.

Let it brown for 30 seconds before removing from heat.




4 cups oil

1 kg beef ribs

2 cups coconut cream 

2 cups chicken stock

1 tbsp chopped Galangal roots

1/3 cup oyster sauce 

4 Kaffir lime leaves 

Lemongrass stalk, only the tender inner part of bottom third

1/3 cup fish sauce  

½ cup palm sugar, shaved 

1/3 cup sweet Thai dressing 

1 tbsp shallots, thinly sliced 

Coriander leaves to garnish

Saw-tooth coriander leaves, sliced finely (to garnish)

For Sweet Thai Dressing 

1½ cup palm sugar, shaved

1 lemongrass stalk (tender inner part of bottom third only), bruised 

¼ cup sliced onion

4 Kaffir lime leaves

1 tsp sliced galangal roots

4 coriander roots (scraped and peeled) 

2 tbsp tamarind juice

1/3 fish sauce


For the dressing, melt palm sugar in a heavy-based pot over medium heat. Add a little water to help break down the sugar. Once melted, add lemongrass, onion, Kaffir lime leaves, galangal and coriander roots, and bring to a boil. Let the sugar lightly caramelise. The ingredients will release some water, so keep reducing until the sugar re-thickens.

Reduce heat, add tamarind juice and fish sauce, taking care as the mixture separates. Mix well and strain, then set aside to cool. The mixture should have honey like consistency and taste sweet and salty. If it solidifies, return the mixture to the heat and add a little more fish sauce and tamarind juice and allow to re-soften.

For the braised beef ribs, preheat the oven to 180°C.

Heat oil in a wok and shallow fry the ribs until brown and caramelized. Drain well and place in a deep braising pan.

In a heavy-based pot, combine the coconut cream, stock, galangal oyster sauce, lime leaves and lemongrass and bring to a boil. Season with fish sauce and palm sugar.

We are looking for a tasty base after using it for braising, the liquid can be reduced for use as a sauce or as a base for a curry. Pour the braising liquid over the beef, cover with a lid or foil paper and braise for 1½ to 2 hours till the ribs are tender.

Remove the pan from the oven and let the ribs cool in the liquid, then remove the ribs from the stock, and strain and reserve the liquid.

Set a broiler to medium-high heat. Broil the ribs until caramelized on the outside. Place the ribs on a serving plate and drizzle with the Sweet Thai Dressing and garnish with the shallots, coriander leaves, mint and saw tooth coriander leaves. You can serve Nahm Pla Prik Dipping Sauce separately with the Beef Ribs.




1 tbsp Bird's eye chilli (sliced into rounds) 

1 tsp sliced shallots

1/3 cup fish sauce 

1/3 cup lemon juice


Combine all ingredients and mix well.




1 kg beef shank pieces

2 cups onion slices 

1 tbsp ginger paste

2 tbsp garlic paste

2 tsp turmeric powder.

2 tsp coriander powder

1 tbsp cumin powder 

1 tbsp paprika powder

1 tbsp dry chilli powder 

½ cup yoghurt

1 tbsp spice powder

1 tbsp poppy seeds paste 

2 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tsp salt

100gm dry plums

½ cup mustard oil, 1 litre water

For the spices powder:

10 cardamoms

2 inch cinnamon stick

mace blades

1 nutmeg

1 tsp allspice 

2 tsp black pepper

2 tsp cloves


For the spices, dry roast all the ingredients and preserve in an airtight container for future use of the excess. 

Heat the oil in a heavy based pan and fry the onion till golden brown. Add all the ingredients except the beef, spice powder, poppy seed, dry plums and lemon juice. Fry the paste until fragrant. Add the beef shank pieces and mix well. Cover and cook on a low heat. The meat will release some water, stir time to time till the liquid is absorbed and a fragrance develops.

Check the seasoning, add the water, bring to a boil and simmer for 1 hour on low heat or until tender.

Add the spices powder, poppy seed paste, dry plum and lemon juice, and cover with a lid. Keep it on low heat until the oil floats to the top.


Photo courtesy: Shaheda Yesmin

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