Creamy Coconut Curry with Beef & Chilli

Serves: 2 people

Difficulty: Easy

This recipe borrows flavours from Thailand and is the perfect spicy curry full of creamy goodness. You can pack it full of veggies if you like, and it tastes great with any meat and seafood.

I’m using a full fat coconut milk but you can use a low fat one if your prefer. It should taste quite sharp so make sure you add enough lime juice, fish sauce and palm sugar to give you those sour, salty and sweet notes.


  • 1 400ml tin coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoons tomato puree
  • 2 large cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon root ginger, roughly chopped
  • 2 red chillies, more or less depending on how you like it
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 3 spring onions
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon palm sugar or brown sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves
  • 250g fillet beef, sliced thinly
  • extra red chillies, sliced, for garnish
  • fresh basil leaves, for garnish


1. Firstly make the sauce in a food processor. Pour in the coconut milk, tomato puree, garlic, ginger, chilli, fish sauce and lime juice.

2. Cut the greens off the spring onions and finely slice them. Keep them aside for garnish. Add the white tops to the processor. In a pestle and mortar grind together the coriander seeds and cumin seeds. Add these to the sauce.

3. Sprinkle in the turmeric, chilli powder and sugar.

4. Blitz to a smooth sauce before pouring into a pan.

5. Add the cinnamon stick and 2 kaffir lime leaves. Finely slice the 3rd one and keep aside for garnish.

6. Bring the sauce to the boil, then reduce and allow to simmer for 10 minutes.

7. Stir in the beef and cook for a few more minutes before removing from the heat. Taste and adjust the seasoning with more lime juice, fish sauce, sugar and chillies if you need to.

8. Serve the spicy coconut curry with some simple steamed rice, garnished with the spring onion greens, shredded lime leaves, fresh red chillies and basil.

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