I’m extra excited about today’s recipe because it comes from my friend Julia’s new cookbook, Paleo Power Bowls! Not only is this book absolutely packed with gorgeous looking food, but it’s also the kind of cookbook you could eat from indefinitely.
Really this isn’t an exaggeration in the least because there’s such a wide variety to choose from, I personally didn’t even know what to cook first. So in the end when I couldn’t make up my mind, I chose this curry because I was craving curry that day. And can I just say… wow! is it ever good.
I would probably be the last person to tell you to run out and buy another cookbook you probably won’t use, and will just end up sitting on your shelf, (not talking about myself or anything…). (And this is coming from a person who had to Marie Kondo herself down to ‘just’ 100 cookbooks.)
However the extra special thing about Julia’s book is that it’s ‘digestive friendly’ to those of us who struggle with those sorts of issues. But it’s also perfect for anyone that doesn’t have any diet restrictions or food intolerances – because everything is so bright, beautiful, and packed with flavor and veggies.
Her photography is also stunning which makes this the kind of book you just want to pour over with a cup of good coffee in hand!
And now onwards to today’s recipe. This one takes a little time because the beef needs to be simmered into tenderness. But it’s mostly ‘hands off’ time, so no worries about anything complicated!
You start by marinating the beef for a bit.
And while the beef marinates, you can prep the rest of the ingredients.
Time Saving Tip: When you’re running short on time, try grabbing already cut up butternut squash. I’ve noticed our Costco carries organic cubed butternut in the refrigerated section.
Money Saving Tip: Definitely cut up your own butternut squash whenever you can. It’s so much cheaper than buying a package.
Finally everything is simmered for about 1 1/2 hours which makes this a perfect ‘weekend’ recipe. And by ‘weekend’ recipe I mean the kind of comforting, easy to make dish that makes the whole house smell amazing as it cooks. This is definitely what I like to call ‘slow cooking’ at it’s finest!
Just like any Asian inspired recipe, it’s really hard to beat fluffy steamed rice as a side dish. However this can easily be Whole30 with cauliflower rice instead. Also I tried this with some roasted butternut noodles as well, and it was fantastic.
So I hope you’ll enjoy this recipe as much as we did. And I have to say it was so much fun cooking from a cookbook again! It’s not something I do very much anymore these days. I’m always creating new recipes out of my head for the blog.
It definitely got me thinking we might have to do some more cookbook inspired posts in the future. Especially when I finally get all 100 cookbooks back out of our storage unit. It would be a blast to dig into them again! Funnily enough I miss them so much, sort of like an old friend I haven’t seen in a while. (No need to point out I’m overly attached to my cookbooks, ha ha ha… but maybe you know the feeling?).Print
This most comforting of curries comes from the Paleo Power Bowls cookbook, and it’s become a new favorite in our house.
1 pound beef stew meat, no bigger than 1″ pieces or so
4 Tablespoons red curry paste, see notes
3 Tablespoons avocado oil, divided
1/2 small butternut squash, cut into 1″ cubes, 4 cups
1/2 cup yellow onion, finely chopped
2 (14 oz) cans full-fat coconut milk
2 Tablespoons lime juice or fish sauce, I used both
1/2 Teaspoon ground cardamom
2 cinnamon sticks
2 star anise pods
1 Tablespoon paprika
1/2 Teaspoon sea salt
3-5 kaffir lime leaves, see notes
2-3 Tablespoons almond or cashew butter, optional, I used cashew butter
Steamed basmati or jasmine rice
Chopped fresh cilantro
Chopped fresh thai or regular basil
Place the beef stew meat in a mixing bowl along with the red curry paste and 2 Tablespoons of the avocado oil. Stir well and allow the meat to marinate at least 15 minutes.
Heat the remaining 1 Tablespoon of avocado oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the meat and brown 2 to 3 minutes, (don’t cook the meat all the way through).
Add the remaining ingredients except the kaffir lime leaves and almond/cashew butter to the pot and stir well. Cover and bring to a full boil. Reduce the heat to low and cook, covered, for 1 hour. Remove the cover and cook at a simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has thickened. In the last 5 minutes of cooking time, add the kaffir lime leaves or lime zest. When the cooking time is done stir in the optional nut butter for an even thicker, more luscious sauce.
Remove the cinnamon sticks, star anise, and lime leaves and discard.
Serve the curry with steamed rice and fresh herbs. For Whole30 options, try cauliflower rice or butternut noodles.
Every curry paste differs vastly in it’s spice factor, so you can start by adding in half the amount called for. Then after most of the cooking time is done, (1 hour 15 minutes) you can taste to see if you’d like to add more. I use the Mae Ploy brand of curry paste and for some reason the red curry paste is quite a bit hotter than the others, so proceed with caution!
If you’re like me and haven’t seen a fresh lime leaf in a grocery store for ages, try adding in 1 Tablespoon finely grated lime zest instead. It’s not the same, but it’s still good, and adds a depth of flavor that balances with the other spices. Also if you do happen to find lime leaves, they freeze perfectly for your next curry making endeavor.
Keywords: Paleo, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Whole30