Hairy Bikers Beef Curry Recipe

Hairy Bikers Beef Curry
Yields: 1 Serving Difficulty: Easy Prep Time: 10 Mins Cook Time: 1 Hr 40 Mins Total Time: 1 Hr 50 Mins

Hairy Bikers Beef Curry is a hearty, spicy, and satisfying dish that will warm you up on a cold day. It is also easy to make, with only a few ingredients and steps. You don’t need any fancy equipment or skills to cook this curry. All you need is a large pot, a frying pan, a knife, and a cutting board. In this article, I will show you how to make Hairy Bikers Beef Curry, with a complete step-by-step guide. You will also learn some tips and tricks to make your curry even better.

Let’s get started!

What is Hairy Bikers Beef Curry Recipe?

Hairy Bikers Beef Curry is a British-Indian fusion dish, made with tender chunks of beef, onions, tomatoes, garlic, ginger, and spices. It is named after Hairy Bikers, a duo of British chefs, writers, and television presenters, who published this recipe in their book The Hairy Bikers’ Great Curries in 2013. This curry is hearty, spicy, and satisfying, and it is easy to make with only a few ingredients and steps.

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Why You Will Love This Recipe

There are many reasons to love this recipe for Hairy Bikers Beef Curry.

Here are some of them:

  • Simplicity Meets Flavor: Despite its complex flavors, this recipe is surprisingly straightforward, making it accessible for cooks of all levels.
  • Customizable Heat: You can adjust the spice levels to suit your taste, making it a hit with both spice lovers and those who prefer milder flavors.
  • Comfort Food at Its Best: The rich, meaty taste of beef combined with aromatic spices creates a comforting and satisfying meal.

Ingredients Needed to Make Hairy Bikers Beef Curry Recipe

To make this recipe for Hairy Bikers Beef Curry, you will need the following ingredients:

  • 1 kg (2.2 lbs) of beef chuck steak, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
  • 3 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 4 cm (1.6 inches) of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • 2 teaspoons of salt
  • 2 teaspoons of ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons of ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons of ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon of paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper (adjust to your taste)
  • 400 g (14 oz) of canned chopped tomatoes
  • 500 ml (2 cups) of beef stock
  • 2 tablespoons of cornflour (cornstarch)
  • 4 tablespoons of water
  • Fresh coriander leaves (cilantro), chopped, for garnish

Useful Equipment

You will need the following equipment:

  • A large pot with a lid, to cook the curry
  • A frying pan, to brown the beef
  • A knife, to cut the beef and chop the garlic and ginger
  • A cutting board, to prepare the beef and chop the garlic and ginger
  • A measuring cup and spoons, to measure the ingredients
  • A whisk, to mix the cornflour and water
  • A wooden spoon, to stir the curry

Instructions to Make Hairy Bikers Beef Curry

To make this recipe for Hairy Bikers Beef Curry, you need to follow these steps:

Step 1: Brown the beef

  • Heat the oil in a frying pan over high heat.
  • Add the beef pieces in batches and brown them on all sides, for about 10 minutes.
  • Transfer the beef to a plate and set aside.

Step 2: Caramelize the onions

  • Heat the same oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  • Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden and caramelized, for about 20 minutes.
  • You may need to lower the heat if the onions start to burn.

Step 3: Add the garlic, ginger, and spices

  • Add the garlic, ginger, salt, cumin, coriander, turmeric, paprika, and cayenne pepper to the onions.
  • Cook, stirring, for about 2 minutes, until fragrant.

Step 4: Add the tomatoes and beef stock

  • Add the tomatoes and beef stock to the onion mixture.
  • Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 15 minutes, until slightly reduced.

Step 5: Return the beef to the pot and simmer

  • Return the beef to the pot and stir well.
  • Cover the pot with a lid and simmer, over low heat, for about 1.5 hours, or until the beef is tender and the sauce is thickened.
  • You may need to add more water if the sauce becomes too dry.

Step 6: Thicken the sauce with cornflour

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the cornflour and water until smooth.
  • Stir the cornflour mixture into the curry and cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes, until the sauce is glossy and thickened.

Step 7: Garnish and serve

  • Sprinkle some fresh coriander leaves over the curry and serve hot.
  • Enjoy your Hairy Bikers Beef Curry with rice, naan bread, or roti.

Beef Curry Recipe Hairy Bikers

What Do I Serve With Hairy Bikers Beef Curry?

Hairy Bikers Beef Curry is a dish that’s both hearty and versatile, pairing wonderfully with a variety of sides.

To elevate your dining experience, consider these delightful accompaniments:

  • Rice Varieties: A staple with curry, rice is the perfect absorber of rich flavors. Opt for white, brown, or aromatic basmati rice. Enhance your rice by cooking it with a hint of salt and a bay leaf, then fluff it up with a fork for the perfect texture.
  • Naan Bread: This soft, chewy flatbread is ideal for scooping up the savory curry sauce. Enhance your naan by smearing it with butter or yogurt. Whether store-bought or homemade, naan is a must-try with this curry.
  • Roti: A thinner, crisper alternative to naan, roti is made with whole wheat flour and water. It’s great for wrapping the curry or for dipping. Available ready-made or as a simple home recipe.
  • Refreshing Salads: A light salad can balance the curry’s richness. Experiment with these ideas:
    • Cucumber Raita Salad: A blend of chopped cucumbers and mint leaves mixed with yogurt, seasoned with salt, pepper, and lemon juice, and garnished with cumin or nigella seeds.
    • Tomato Onion Salad: A tangy mix of sliced tomatoes and red onions, seasoned with salt, pepper, sugar, and vinegar, dressed in olive oil, and garnished with coriander or parsley.
    • Carrot Slaw Salad: A colorful mix of grated carrots with raisins, sunflower seeds, mayonnaise, lemon juice, honey, salt, and pepper. Add cabbage, apple, or pineapple for more variety.

Pro Tips to Make Perfect Hairy Bikers Beef Curry

To elevate your Hairy Bikers Beef Curry to perfection, consider these pro tips:

  • Select Quality Beef: Opt for beef cuts suitable for slow cooking, like chuck steak, brisket, or stewing steak. Their flavor and texture are ideal for this dish.
  • Right Beef Size: Cut the beef into bite-sized pieces for even cooking and easy eating. Trim any excess fat for a leaner curry.
  • Effective Browning: Sear the beef thoroughly for a caramelized crust, adding depth to the curry. Brown in batches to avoid overcrowding.
  • Onion Caramelization: Sauté onions until golden, bringing out their natural sweetness. Adjust heat and moisture as needed.
  • Freshness Counts: Use fresh garlic, ginger, and spices for authentic flavor. Consider toasting the spices beforehand for an aromatic boost.
  • Tomatoes and Stock: Utilize canned tomatoes and low-sodium beef stock for convenience and consistent taste. Add tomato paste for a richer sauce.
  • Gentle Simmering: Slow cook the curry under a lid to let the beef tenderize and the sauce concentrate.
  • Sauce Thickening: For a glossy, smooth sauce, use a cornflour-water mixture. Adjust the curry’s seasoning to your liking.
  • Fresh Coriander Garnish: Add a sprinkle of freshly chopped coriander leaves just before serving for a burst of freshness and color.

Variations of Hairy Bikers Beef Curry

Hairy Bikers Beef Curry is not only a classic dish but also a canvas for culinary creativity.

Here are some variations you can explore:

Lamb Curry:

  • Swap beef for lamb, choosing cuts like shoulder, leg, or neck.
  • Brown the lamb well for a gamey, rich flavor.
  • Add garam masala for extra warmth and complexity.

Chicken Curry:

  • Use chicken (thighs, breasts, or drumsticks) as a lighter alternative to beef.
  • Brown chicken pieces lightly to maintain tenderness.
  • Enhance the curry with yogurt, coconut milk, or cream for added richness.

Vegetable Curry:

  • Create a vegetarian or vegan version by using a variety of vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, cauliflower, broccoli, peas, beans, or mushrooms.
  • Add vegetables either raw or pre-cooked.
  • Use vegetable stock instead of beef stock and omit cornflour for a plant-based option.

How do I Store Hairy Bikers Beef Curry Leftovers?

  • Cool Down: Allow the curry to cool to room temperature before storing. It’s important not to leave it out for more than 2 hours to prevent bacterial growth.
  • Airtight Containers: Transfer the cooled curry into airtight containers. This helps to maintain freshness and prevents the curry’s aroma from affecting other foods in the refrigerator.
  • Refrigeration: Place the containers in the refrigerator. The curry can be safely stored in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Hairy Bikers Beef Curry Recipe

Expert Tips to Make Perfect Hairy Bikers Beef Curry

  • Choose the Right Beef Cut: For the best results, select a cut of beef that’s well-suited for slow cooking. Beef chuck steak is ideal as it becomes exceptionally tender and flavorsome when simmered slowly. This cut also has a good balance of meat and fat, adding richness to the curry.
  • Browning is Key: Take the time to thoroughly brown the beef. This process, known as the Maillard reaction, develops deep flavors in the meat. Ensure the pan is hot, and brown the beef in batches to avoid overcrowding, which can lead to steaming rather than searing.
  • Optimize Onion Caramelization: The slow caramelization of onions is crucial. It should be done patiently over medium heat, stirring occasionally. This process brings out the natural sweetness of the onions, providing a flavor foundation for the curry.
  • Freshness of Spices: Use fresh, high-quality spices for the best flavor. The potency of spices diminishes over time, so using fresh spices ensures a more vibrant and aromatic curry. Consider lightly toasting the ground spices before adding them to the curry to intensify their flavors.
  • Balancing Spice and Flavor: Adjust the level of heat according to your preference. If you enjoy a spicier curry, consider adding extra cayenne pepper or fresh chili. For a milder version, reduce the cayenne and focus on the aromatic spices like cumin and coriander.
  • Slow Cooking: Let the curry simmer gently. This not only tenderizes the beef but also allows the flavors to meld together beautifully. If the curry is cooking too quickly or seems dry, add a bit more beef stock.
  • Thickening the Curry: If you prefer a thicker sauce, use the cornflour-water mixture as described. However, remember to add this mixture towards the end of the cooking process, and simmer it briefly to avoid over-thickening or altering the flavor.
  • Resting Time: Once cooked, let the curry sit for a few minutes off the heat before serving. This resting period allows the flavors to settle and the sauce to thicken slightly, enhancing the overall taste and texture.
  • Garnishing: Garnish with fresh coriander (cilantro) just before serving. The freshness of the herb contrasts beautifully with the deep flavors of the curry, adding a burst of color and freshness.
  • Serving Suggestions: While rice and naan are classic accompaniments, you can also try serving the curry with different types of bread or over a bed of steamed vegetables for a healthier twist.

Variations of Hairy Bikers Beef Curry

  • Chicken or Lamb Curry: Replace beef with chicken or lamb for a different flavor profile. Chicken thighs or lamb shoulder are excellent choices as they remain tender when cooked slowly.
  • Vegetarian Curry: For a vegetarian version, use hearty vegetables like potatoes, cauliflower, and chickpeas. You can also add paneer or tofu for additional protein.
  • Seafood Curry: Incorporate seafood such as prawns, fish, or scallops for a lighter version. Seafood requires less cooking time, so add it towards the end of the cooking process.
  • Creamy Curry: Add coconut milk or cream for a richer, creamier texture. This addition can also help mellow down the spiciness if needed.
  • Spicy Kick: For those who enjoy an extra bit of heat, incorporate more cayenne pepper, red chili flakes, or fresh green chilies.
  • Slow Cooker Curry: Prepare the recipe in a slow cooker for convenience. Brown the meat and sauté the onions before adding them to the slow cooker with the rest of the ingredients. Cook on low for 6-8 hours.

How do I store Hairy Bikers Beef Curry Leftovers?

  • Cool Down: Allow the curry to cool to room temperature. Avoid leaving it out for more than 2 hours to prevent bacterial growth.
  • Airtight Containers: Transfer the curry to airtight containers. This will help maintain its freshness and prevent the curry’s aroma from affecting other foods in the refrigerator.
  • Refrigeration: Store the containers in the refrigerator if you plan to consume the leftovers within 3 days.
  • Freezing for Longer Storage: For longer storage, the curry can be frozen. Place it in freezer-safe containers or bags and store it for up to 3 months.
  • Labeling: It’s helpful to label the containers with the date of storage to keep track of their freshness.

How do I Reheat Hairy Bikers Beef Curry Leftovers?

  • Choosing the Method: You can reheat the curry either on the stove or in the microwave. The stove is preferred for even heating.
  • Stovetop Reheating: Pour the curry into a pan and heat it over medium heat. Stir occasionally to ensure even heating. If the curry seems too thick, you can add a little water to adjust the consistency.
  • Microwave Reheating: If using a microwave, transfer the curry to a microwave-safe dish. Cover it with a microwave-safe lid or plastic wrap to trap steam and heat evenly. Reheat on high power, stirring midway, until thoroughly warmed.

Nutrition value (per serving):

  • Calories: 426 kcal
  • Sugar: 6.4 g
  • Fat: 32.1 g
  • Saturated fat: 4.0 g
  • Salt: 1.51 g
  • Protein: 25.7 g
  • Carbohydrates: 8.8 g


Can I Make Hairy Bikers Beef Curry in a Slow Cooker?

Absolutely! Hairy Bikers Beef Curry adapts well to slow cooking. Simply brown your beef and sauté the onions, garlic, and ginger as per the recipe, then transfer everything to your slow cooker. Add the spices, canned tomatoes, and beef stock. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. This method ensures the beef becomes exceptionally tender and the flavors meld perfectly.

Is It Possible to Make This Curry with Chicken Instead of Beef?

Yes, you can substitute beef with chicken. Use boneless, skinless chicken thighs for the best flavor and texture. The cooking time will be shorter compared to beef, usually around 30 minutes of simmering after adding the chicken, as it cooks faster than beef.

How Can I Make This Curry Spicier?

To increase the heat level, you can add more curry powder, a pinch of cayenne pepper, or finely chopped fresh chili peppers when adding the other spices. Adjust according to your taste preference, starting with a small amount and increasing as needed.

Can I Freeze Hairy Bikers Beef Curry?

Yes, this curry freezes very well. Allow the curry to cool completely, then transfer it to freezer-safe containers or bags. It can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and reheat gently on the stove or in the microwave.

What Are Some Low-Carb Alternatives to Serve with This Curry?

For a low-carb option, consider serving the curry with cauliflower rice, zucchini noodles, or a side of steamed vegetables like broccoli or green beans. These alternatives complement the richness of the curry without adding many carbs.

Final Words

Hairy Bikers Beef Curry is a delicious and easy recipe that you can make at home, with only a few ingredients and steps. It is a hearty, spicy, and satisfying dish that will warm you up on a cold day. You can serve it with rice, naan bread, or roti, and some salad, for a complete and balanced meal. You can also customize it with different additions or substitutions, to suit your taste and preference. I hope you enjoyed this article, and I hope you will try this recipe soon. Thank you for reading, and happy cooking!

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