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This recipe is classed as easy

Rating 2.76 / 5 (33 votes)

Prep time:
15 min
Cook time:
1 hr 15 min

Meltingly tender beef mixes with aromatic spices and fiery chilli in Atul Kochhar's classic South-East Asian dish


1. Put the shallots, lemongrass and garlic in a food processor. Add a splash of water and blend until smooth.

2. Heat the vegetable oil in a heavy casserole pan and fry the shallot mixture and cook over a medium heat for about 5 minutes – until you catch a fragrant toasted garlic and lemony aroma. Stir in the chilli paste and sugar and continue frying for another 5 minutes until the mixture darkens and the oil separates from the spicy paste. Tip in the beef and cook until lightly browned, stirring all the time.

3. Add the ginger, turmeric, lime leaves, and enough water to half-cover the meat. Cook, uncovered, until the meat browns and the masala clings to the meat.

4. Pour over the coconut milk and about 200ml water. Simmer, partially covered, for about an hour until the beef is tender and most of the liquid has evaporated. You might need to add extra water if the meat looks like it will catch on the bottom of the pan.

5. Heat a small sturdy frying pan over a low heat and toast the desiccated coconut, stirring all the time, until golden. Mix the coconut with the rendang and serve with steamed rice.


  • 3 large finely diced shallots
  • 1 stem of lemongrass
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp paste of red chilli, shop bought
  • 11/2 tsp muscovado sugar
  • 5 cm ginger, finely shredded
  • 11/2 tsp turmeric
  • 650 g stewing steak, cut into 3cm cubes
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves
  • 400 ml coconut milk
  • 11/2 tbsp desiccated coconut, roasted
  • Steamed rice, to serve

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Latest Comment


Fabulous recipe, which I prepared using my slow cooker to ensure that the beef was cooked to tenderness without racking up the electricity bill.

See my slow cooker version at : [link]

Jenny PoshPaws Jenny PoshPaws  Posted 24 Oct 2011 12:21 PM

Dear Atul,
You should take some time to learn about Indonesian dishes. Rending appears to be Rendang originating in Sumatra. If the 'gravy' is cooked down it is Rendang and if retained with a 'gravy' it is called Kalio.

Indah Indah  Posted 16 Feb 2011 10:51 PM