This dish celebrates a British dish as old as history books, Roast Beef, and typical traditional Indian flavors drawing on punchy spices like turmeric and cayenne. It’s a fantastic dish to use leftovers with, but could just as easily be a staple cooked with fresh beef with a few minor modifications.
What Does Anglo Indian Mean?
First of all, Anglo means of British descent. When we talk about Anglo Indian, this is the culture that is typically descendant from the British Raj (the British occupation of India). Even though this was a colonial empire conquest, the Indian nation still holds many British cultural contributions in high regard. There is a small but thriving Anglo Indian community that started when colonists stayed in the country following the end of occupation and married local Indian people. This resulted in a new group of people, the Anglo Indians.
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Anglo Indian Roast Beef
Now that we’ve cleared up the root of the name of the dish, we can discern that this frankly delightful dish curries up (please don’t excuse the pun, that’s great) the best of Indian and British flavors. There’s not usually a whole lot going for British cuisine, it’s often seen as bland and unappealing, but roast beef is one of the stand out kings of British food. Cuts such as those used in a bottom round roast recipe are often served medium-rare so that it’s still pink in the middle, this Sunday staple is an absolute winner.
Combine that (namely the leftovers if there are any) with the explosive, enticing flavors of India, and you’ve got Anglo Indian Roast Beef. It might sound a bit like you’re just making a curry with leftovers, but trust me, there’s more to it than that.
- 1 lb leftovers roast meat, in this instance beef but lamb works just as well.
- 1 tablespoon of vinegar. I’d choose rice vinegar or apple cider vinegar.
- 1 1⁄4 teaspoons salt – follow the recipe closely as this is the total amount used in different ways.
- 3⁄4 teaspoon ground turmeric – same warning as the salt.
- 2 russet potatoes – medium size.
- 6 tablespoons cooking oil (canola, vegetable, sunflower) – same warning as the salt.
- 1 medium yellow onion- cut in half then thinly sliced.
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons minced ginger – fresh works best, but the easy prep stuff in a tube is a great second place.
- 1⁄4 teaspoon cayenne pepper.
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- Take your beef and ensure that it is thinly sliced. Don’t shy away from any fatty parts of the trimming but try not to leave them in too big chunks or they won’t render properly.
- Give all of the beef a good rub with turmeric and vinegar. If you didn’t add too much seasoning to the beef while it was last cooking you might add more salt to taste at this stage.
- Boil the potatoes until they’re cooked to your liking. I tend to first boil them with a little salt for around 10 minutes, at this point they still have some bite but aren’t falling apart. If they’re not quite done, let them sit in the water for around 10 minutes and they’ll continue cooking at a slower rate.
- Chop the potatoes into a shape of your choice, wedges, cubes, rounds, whatever you fancy. Coat them with turmeric and a good helping of salt. Potatoes love salt, don’t hold back here. Imagine you’re in Hell’s Kitchen, you don’t want your food sent back for underseasoning.
- In a large frying pan or wok, heat some oil and fry the ginger and onion until it softens and is delightfully aromatic.
- Add in the cayenne, followed by the beef. It’s your choice if you want to add the marinade as well. Personally I like it, it adds a nice layer of flavor to the dish, plus reduced vinegar has an almost sweet syrupy flavor which compliments the earthy spices perfectly.
- If it’s looking dry slowly add water, this will also add some tenderness back into the meat which is great if it has been sitting for a while.
- Now you have a choice, separately fry the potatoes so they get a bit of crisp or add them to the same pan, which has less crisp but they get more flavor into them.
- Serve next to each other, on top of each other, or as a mash up.
- I would serve with some lime pickle, mango chutney or raita.
There you have it, traditional British and Indian cuisines that have been merged to create a whole new dish. There are endless ways that you could alter this recipe to suit your own tastes. You could add vegetables, you could alter the spices, you could even change the meat. That’s the beauty of cooking, experimenting yields delicious delights.
- Getting the balance of spices and seasoning right is a personal thing, remember that it’s easy to add but difficult to take away.
- You might consider adding a lemon or cilantro garnish for a little citrus burst.
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