Beef Rendang

Want to celebrate some Indonesian culture? Try making delicious Beef Rendang!


  • 2 lb. boneless beef chuck or boneless beef short ribs, cut into 2” cubes
  • 5 TBSP avocado or olive oil
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 whole nutmeg, slightly crushed in a mortar and pestle
  • 10-12 dried chilies, soaked in warm water and seeded
  • 2 sticks of cinnamon
  • 3 star anise
  • 3 cardamom pods
  • 5 macadamia nuts
  • 6 small shallots, roughly chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • (1) 2-inch piece fresh turmeric, peeled and roughly chopped, or 1 1/2 tsp. Ground turmeric
  • (1) 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
  • (1) 2-inch piece galangal, peeled and thinly sliced (can substitute extra ginger)
  • 3 stalks lemongrass, trimmed, smashed with a mallet, and tied into knots
  • 2 tsp. Tamarind paste, without seeds
  • 6-7 Kaffir lime leaves, finely sliced (may substitute Bay leaf and lime zest)
  • (2) 1/2C unsweetened, full fat coconut milk
  • Salt to taste

Pulse cloves and nutmeg in a food processor until very fine. Add chiles, shallots, nuts, garlic, turmeric, ginger, and galangal. Process until a slightly smooth paste forms, about 2 minutes. Heat the oil in a stew pot, add spice paste, cinnamon, cloves, star anise, cardamom and stir-fry until aromatic. Add the beef and pounded lemongrass and stir for one minute. Add the coconut milk, tamarind paste, and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, stirring occasionally. Stir in kaffir lime leaves. Cover, and continue to cook until meat is tender and most of liquid is cooked in, stirring occasionally, about 3 1/2- 4 hours. Discard whole spices before serving. Enjoy a taste of Indonesia!