top of page

Beef Rendang

A beautiful Indonesian classic - rendang. This is such a great dish to make ahead of time and tastes even better the next day once the flavours have matured. Recipe below...




1 inch knob of ginger, peeled

1 inch knob of turmeric, peeled (2 tsp ground turmeric can be used as an alternative) (peeled)

6 large garlic cloves, peeled

5 large shallots, peeled and cut in half

5 dried chillis

3 tsp cumin

3 tsp coriander

1 tbsp coconut oil

1.5kg / 3.3lbs beef short ribs (feel free to use another cheaper cut if you like)

1 litre coconut milk (recipe for homemade milk below)

1/4 cup kaffir lime leaves (roughly 10)

1 stick of cinamon

2 star anise

3 stalks of lemongrass (bashed a few times with the back of a knife)

Salt to taste

Coconut milk (if making yourself):

Makes 1 litre

4 coconuts

4 cups water

1/2 tsp salt

To Serve:

Fresh red chillis (garnish)

Coriander (garnish)

Steamed rice



1. Begin by adding the ginger, turmeric, galangal, shallots, garlic, chillis, cumin and coriander into a blender. Blitz until a paste is formed.

2. In a large pan, heat up the coconut oil over a high heat. Once up to temperature, brown the beef short ribs (should take a few minutes), remove from the pan and set aside.

3. Turn the heat down to medium and add the spice mix into the same pan. Cook through for 5 minutes. Add the beef short ribs back into the pan, tip over the coconut milk and add the cinnamon, star anise and lemongrass. Season with a good pinch of salt.

4. Bring to a simmer, cover with a lid and cook for 90 minutes in an oven of 160 C / 320 F. Remove the lid and skim off any excess fat. Cook for another 1-2 hours uncovered (checking every 20 minutes and giving a stir) until reduced and a nice thick consistency has formed. Rendang traditionally is not a 'wet' dish - there shouldn't be a runny gravy. Remove the cinnamon, star anise, lime leaves and lemongrass before serving.

Coconut Milk:

1. To begin we need to get the flesh out of the coconuts. Using a screwdriver and hammer, pierce a hole in each of the three 'eyes' of the coconut. Strain any water and save it to drink (chill in the fridge - this is delicious!).

2. With the back of a knife, hit the middle of the coconut, making your way around the circumference. Keep doing this and you will the notice the sound of the tap get deeper and a clear crack should form, at which point you can pull it apart with your hands.

3. Place the halves of coconut onto a roasting tray, flesh side down, and roast at 200 C / 390 F for 15 minutes (this helps with removing the flesh from the shell). Remove from the oven and leave to cool down.

4. Once cooled, use a sturdy knife around the edges to prize apart the flesh from the shell.

5. Place the coconut flesh into a blender with the 4 cups of water and salt. Blitz on high for 5 minutes.

6. Tip the coconut milk into a bowl lined with cheesecloth. Wrap into a tight bundle and squeeze out as much of the liquid as possible. This should leave you with roughly 1 litre of fresh coconut milk.

To Serve:

Serve the rendang in a bowl, topped with some freshly chopped red chillis and coriander. Kerisik, toasted coconut also makes for a nice topping and can bring a beautiful nutty flavour to the dish. Goes well with steamed rice. Enjoy!


bottom of page