Fragrant Coconut-Lime Beef Stew
From Jim Romanoff, AP
3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1 medium yellow onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or more to taste
3 pounds beef chuck, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 (14-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk
2-inch strip lime zest
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
2 bay leaves
1 pound baby carrots
1/2 cup chopped peanuts (optional)
In a large Dutch oven over a medium-high flame, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil. Add the onion and saute until pieces begin to color, about 7 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, coriander, cumin, turmeric and cayenne pepper. Cook until fragrant, about 1 minute longer. Transfer the mixture to a large plate.
Return the Dutch oven to the stove. Increase heat to high and add another 1½ teaspoons of oil to the pot. When the oil is hot, add a quarter of the beef and cook until well browned on all sides, about 3 minutes. Transfer to the plate. Brown the remaining beef in 3 more batches, adding oil as needed.
Return the onion mixture and browned beef to the pot. Stir in the coconut milk, lime zest, lime juice, brown sugar, ½ teaspoon salt, bay leaves and baby carrots. Bring the mixture to a simmer, cover, then place in a preheated 325-degree oven for 1½ to 1¾ hours, or until the beef is tender.
Season with salt. Serve over rice, garnished with chopped peanuts, if desired.
Note: The stew also can be simmered over low heat on the burner.