Curcurmin is the yellow pigment found in the spice turmeric and a key ingredient in yellow curry, which is said to inhibit melanoma cell growth and stimulates tumor cell death-I read this and it is said, people in India have 20% less cancer than people in the West because of the inclusion of Indian spices-cumin, curcumin, ginger in their food regimens.
I made a beef curry last night with Japanese beef and the process is as follows. I use high heat to sear the meat, and add some shoyu at the end and some aged mirin to color the meat. The key is to have plenty of space in your pan when searing the meat and don’t overload the pan or the meat will not sear correctly.
The searing is one of the keys to beef curry because this is the only way you can color the meat. Once the meat is inside the curry, you are stuck and coloring it very different in a liquid. So sear it, de-glaze the pan after the meat has the coloration and the Maillard reaction has happened.
Unfortunately I seared my meat in a rush that is seen if you look at the picture carefully. The main challenge is keeping the beef from seeming dry. That in part is the type of cut and the timing of how long and how gentle you stew the beef.
I used very little Turmeric because I do not like yellow coloured curry for beef, as it over shadows the meat. But I do add some turmeric, cumin, paprika, cloves, star anise, fresh garlic and other spices such as fresh onion and cinnamon. There is also the possibility to add some dry mango and fenugreek and my favorite is mace. These all are a matter of practice and the fun of curry is testing the taste.
I then slow cook it for 5 hours on the stove and add some water as needed. At the beginning I add some red wine to reduce, add color, some flavour but it will not help to soften the meat.
You can add some pineapple or mango to help soften the meat but remove it, or leave it inside the curry in a cheesecloth. Some raw fruits can be used to tenderize meat before cooking because they contain enzymes that break down proteins. However some people enjoy the sweetness of pineapple, especially when the curry is spicy, and believe it adds a dimension of contrast but this works better with chicken.
The main ingredient I prefer is fresh unripe pepper, and on the stem as you can see it is bright green.
In the end I remove the meat into a shallow pan, and pour the liquid through a sieve and to remove all the small particles. Then add it back to the cooked beef in the pan and it is ready to serve.
You can add some thickener such as arrowroot (kudzu) and then serve it with some fresh rice. I add some fresh garlic that is stewed into the curry in the last part and voila its a beef curry. If you use kudzu make sure you dilute it in water and add it to the pan only after it is diluted.
Here is an old recipe I found on Mesubim.
But here is what I learned in India when I visited: