Recipe: Beef Dopiaza

Rating: 4.3 stars based on 979 reviews


  • 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)

other ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons groundnut oil and large knob of butter
  • 2 medium onions, sliced thinly across-wise
  • 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
  • 400ml tin coconut milk
  • 5 fl oz (150 ml) natural yoghurt
  • salt and freshly milled black pepper

To serve:

  • juice 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh coriander leaves


  • 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 and butter in the casserole over a high heat and, when it is really hot, brown the pieces of meat a few at a time.
  • Now fry the thinly sliced onions until translucent.
  • Remove them to a plate, then add the rest of the oil/butter 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 add the coconut milk 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.


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