Beef (or Mutton) Pepper Curry

A couple of days ago when I set out to make lunch I was wondering what to prepare. It had been a while since I had tried out a new meat recipe and to be honest I have become a little lazy to hunt for anything new and generally like to stick to my tried and tested collection of recipes. When it's beef or mutton I only like to make 'sukka' out of them as it is fast and simple but then when I saw my collection of beef recipes I decided that it was about time I added a new recipe there. Here's what I currently have on the blog under the 'beef' category (of course, the mutton recipe collection has some recipes that can be made with either mutton (goat meat or lamb) or beef)

Beef Chilli Fry *(Mangalorean)
Beef Sukka *(Mangalorean)
Beef or Mutton Devil *(Mangalorean)
Tongue Curry  *(Goan/East India/Bombay Style)
Beef Fry  *(Kerala Style)
Pepper Beef *(South Indian-Chinese Fusion Style)
Simple Meat Stew  *(Mangalorean)

So I started to make a dish on my own. Added a bit of this and a bit of that and decided to make something with a hint of green, more like a green masala base. However, as I started to prepare the masala, more ideas popped into my head and I ended up making something totally out of the box. Some ingredients were fried before being ground and that added a whole dimension and depth of flavours to this dish. I can vouch for the fact that this dish can be made with mutton and chicken too and can be served with any carb you please - plain white rice, boiled rice, pulao,  neer dosa, dosa, idli, sanna, chapathi, poori (yes!), cous cous (yes, yes!), kuboos (and why not?!), ragi muddhe (steamed finger millet balls) and maybe even corn tortillas! See! The possibilities are endless!

After the dish was made I hurriedly plated it and styled it. The Dubai summers have set in and it is getting harder by the day to shoot outdoors (in my balcony). Such a pity because the light is so beautiful during the summer but the heat is just too much. Anyway, I made mini dosas (using store bought dosa batter) to go along with this curry and the whole taste experience was marvellous. Lip smackin' good I'd say. Sorry, I am praising my own tail, but it's not every day that I hit the jackpot. The number of flops I have had when I've gone on a recipe creation rampage isn't even funny. I really pity my family who has borne the brunt of it because I rarely feed a dish to the garbage bin you see :-) I have a whole compilation of pictures of dishes that failed miserably. Anyway, let's not talk negative on this beautiful Thursday. A post is waiting to be posted and the weekend is waiting to be enjoyed. What are your plans for the weekend? Mine are to work with my son on his school project, watch a movie or two, buy and wrap a birthday gift, clean the house and prep up for another long and gruelling school week ahead. So before I bid you goodbye for the weekend, here's my recipe for today. Hope you enjoy it. If you do try this recipe (or any other) click a picture and post it on your Instagram or Facebook and use the hashtag #ruchikrandhap so that I get notified. I'd love to see and hear how you enjoyed the dish! 

Beef (or Mutton) Pepper Curry
Prep time: 15-20 mins | Cook time: 45 mins | Serves: 4

For the masala:
To be fried and ground (optional step see notes):
1. Wash the meat and place it on a colander to drain and then transfer to a bowl.
2. On a heavy based skillet, fry the urad dal, curry leaves and coconut till you get a nice aroma. Add the chopped tomatoes and fry for another minute or so. Remove onto a plate and let it cool.
2. Grind the dry spices (coriander, peppercorns, turmeric, cinnamon, cloves) mentioned under 'For the masala' to a fine powder. Add the ginger, garlic, green chilli, onions and the fried coconut-tomato mixture and grind everything to a fine paste. Marinate the meat with this masala and salt to taste and keep aside for 10-15 minutes. Rinse the grinding jar with 1/2 cup of water and reserve it too.
3. Heat oil or ghee in a pressure cooker and fry the sliced onions till golden brown. Add the marinated meat, sliced tomato and fry for about 1-2 minutes. Then add the reserved masala water and another 1 or 1-1/2 cups of water and mix everything well.
4. Cover the pressure cooker, place the weight (whistle) and cook on full heat for 4-5 whistles. Then reduce the heat completely to sim and cook for another 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat and let the cooker cool down a bit till the whistle loosens up. Open and check if the meat is tender, if not, cook it further for another 1-2 whistles.
5. If you wish to add potatoes you can add them now and cook the curry on a medium heat till the potatoes are tender. Adjust
6. Garnish with fresh coriander and serve with dosa, plain paratha, idli, chapathi, sanna, rice or pulao.

1. If you are running short of time you may skip the roasting process (as mentioned under 'To be fried before being ground'), however doing this imparts a great flavour to the curry.