Stewed Beef with tamarind and apricot.

This is a thick and rich beef stew that’s sure to be a crowd pleaser when one is entertaining.

It goes well with many dishes and the leftovers can be great for a sandwich.

The addition of the dried fruits adds a bit of sweetness that blends in well with the other spices used.

You will need:-

1. Stewing Beef 1 kg cut in medium chunks.

2. One large onion, chopped. One bay leaf.

3. Ginger garlic paste, 1 tbsp

4. Mixed spice blend, 1 tbsp. Divide in half.

5. Honey, a tbsp.

6. Apricots dried 1 cup chopped

7. Tomatoes 3, blended

8. Tamarind paste 1 tbsp

12. Bell pepper, chopped

13. Hot water / stock 2 cups

Method.

Rub beef with some oil and half the mixed spice blend. Rub all over well.

Heat pan and add oil.

Sear beef set aside.

Add oil if needed. Then bay leaf, onions and cook till soft. Add garlic ginger.

Next ground spices mixed well.

These are spices I used to make a spices blend for this dish, as well as a pinch of ground cinnamon.

Add tomatoes and tamarind and bell peppers.

I used some tomato paste too.

Let them cook down well. Return the beef.

I used raisins and apricots; you can chop the apricots too if you wish.

Cook low and slow for an hour then add the dried fruit mix. And some honey.

Add more water if needed.

Cook for another 30 or so minutes, on low, until meat is tender and sauce thick.

The meat is really tender at this point with a lovely aroma.

Check seasoning and garnish with chopped coriander leaves.

Serve hot over rice and salad on the side.

It makes an excellent main when entertaining or as a family meal. We had ours with some rice, potatoes and salad.
This is my go to beef dish when serving many people. It goes well with other dishes.

Chickpea pilaf.

This is a delicious and flavour full one pot meal that’s tasty, healthy and easy to make.

Chickpeas are rich in nutrients; a great source of protein which is perfect if you don’t want to use meat in the dish. The greens used here (amaranth and spinach) are also great sources of vitamins and protein too.

Colourful and tasty.

I like one pot rice meals such as this as they come together so fast and one can put in what’s available to make a tasty meal.

You will need:-

  • 1 cup of rinsed and drained chickpeas.
  • One large onion, chopped.
  • Two tbsp coconut oil. Or ghee.
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds and one bay leaf.
  • One cup soaked basmati rice.
  • Ginger garlic paste. A tbsp will do.
  • 2tsp ground good quality pilau masala.
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • Greens of choice ( I bunch will do, chopped).
  • Chopped coriander.
  • 2 cups water or stock.

Method.

  • Heat your pan and add your coconut oil as well as cumin seeds and bay leaf.
  • Once they start sputtering, add onions, cook until starting to brown then add the ginger garlic paste. Mix well. Before adding the pilau masala.
  • Next go in the coriander stalks and the chickpeas, as well as salt and pepper, followed by the chopped greens. I used a mix of amaranth leaves and spinach I had leftover from a previous meal.
  • Add the rice and mix well. Then in goes your stock. Cover and simmer till all the water is drained and rice is cooked through.

Serve with a salad of your choice.

I had mine with a simple tomato cucumber and onion salad.

Perfect for a light dinner, quick lunch and a hit with the kids.

What’s not to love about this beautiful meal?

Tasty French Beans Recipe.

French beans aka green beans aka haricot vert are usually had as side dishes, steamed or sautéed. Here is a simple recipe that enables them shine as a main vegetable dish.

Green beans are known as ‘miciri’ or ‘mishiri’ in my mother tongue and are usually chopped and added to a stew with meat (beef) carrot and potatoes.

I however prefer them a bit bigger in size and crunchy too, cooked through but with some bite to them.

They are rich in various vitamins, such as Vitamins K and C, also rich in folate, fiber, and calcium among other nutritional benefits.

They are also easily available and affordable in Kenya and Uganda. And are one of Kenya’s main horticultural export crops.

My son loves them. Whether as a saucy curry, sautéed with some butter, steamed or even roasted with some carrots there is no shortage of ways to get your family to have and love this vegetable.

Let’s get started.

Our ingredients are:-

1. French beans. (About 2 large fistfuls). Cleaned and sliced diagonally.

2. One large onion. Chopped.

3. Two large cloves of garlic. (Use local, it has better flavour).

4. 2 tablespoons cooking oil.

5. Salt and pepper to taste.

6. Spices used are 1 teaspoon of black mustard seeds, a bit of turmeric, and 1 teaspoon of Kenyan curry powder.

7. Three tomatoes, chopped.

Method.

Heat your pan and add the oil and mustard seeds, then the onion.

Let the onion cook till a bit brown and add your minced garlic.

Add the ground spices and mix well till they release their flavours then add the tomatoes, and some salt.

Lower heat and cover. Let the tomatoes cook down into a mushy sauce.

Add your green beans and mix well.

Cover and cook on low for ten minutes. If you want them more tender cook for longer but not too long as they get chewy. Ten to twelve minutes are just right for me.

Check seasoning and serve hot. You can have it as a side or as a main vegetable dish. I had mine with some aromatic rice.

Easy peasy. Simple, tasty, colorful and filling.

Give it a try and have your French beans in a different way. You will not regret it.