Thursday, 12 February 2015

Beef Soup


I love beef. In any form. Hamburgers, BBQ, steak, chili, curry, rendang, beef noodles, whatever. Mmm...I love my "gubak"! And another thing I love is a good robust beef soup. One with loads of vegetables and a good spice mix. 


The spices used in this soup are cinnamon sticks, star anise, cardamoms, cloves, fennel, cumin and coriander seeds. I once cooked a soup similar to this and though the soup was good, my complaint was that I had all these pesky spices swimming all over my soup. It is not a nice experience having something grainy in your soup and biting into the spices is not nice at all. So I wised up and bundled them in two pieces of gauze. Yup, surgical gauze.



Then I tied up the pouch with kitchen twine. This went into the soup together with ginger, lemongrass and cinnamon stick.



So the first thing I did was boil a big pot of water and threw in the spice pouch, cinnamon stick, ginger and lemongrass and let it simmer for about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, I sliced the beef and boiled it in another pot of water. I did this to remove the blood, scum and strong smell. True enough, the water was bloody and murky and had an unpleasant smell. Then I drained the beef slices and rinsed it under running water.



I brought the soup back on the boil and added the carrots, white radish, celery, tomatoes and the beef slices. Then I let it simmer for 2 hours. It is always nice to sprinkle the soup with crispy fried shallots as it adds a lot of flavor to the soup. But laziness got the better of me (as it always does) and what I did was to fry some onions till wilted and then added some mined garlic. Once the garlic was browned, I tipped the whole lot, oil and all into the soup (I did not use a lot of oil, just enough to fry the onions and garlic. Stop hyperventilating!).



And then a generous sprinkling of freshly cracked pepper. Lots and lots of it! To serve, I garnished the soup with spring onions and coriander. Chinese parsley (daun soup) is also a good garnish but I did not have this. This soup made a very good low carbohydrate meal for me.










Beef Soup
Recipe source : Adapted from Table For Two.....or More

Ingredients :
- 700g beef
- 2 carrots, cut into cubes
- 1 daikon, cut into cubes
- 2 ribs celery, sliced
- 4 tomatoes, cut into halves
- 3 stalks lemongrass, crushed
- 1 thumbsized ginger, crushed

Spice mix 
- 2" cinnamon stick
- 2 star anise
- 4 cardamoms
- 4 cloves
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp coriander seeds

- Freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- 2 cubes of beef or chicken stock (I find beef stock too strong and I use chicken stock. Yeah go ahead and laugh)
- 1.5 litres water
- Coriander leaves and spring onions to garnish

For onion and garlic oil
- 1 big onion, sliced
- 5 cloves garlic, minced

Method :
1. Put star anise, cardamoms, cloves, fennel, cumin and coriander seeds into a muslin bag (or in my case, I used gauze).
2. Bring 1.5 liters water to a boil in a pot. Add spice pouch, cinnamon stick, lemongrass, ginger and stock cubes. Simmer for about 30 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, slice beef. Bring another pot of water to the boil and blanch the beef to clean it of blood and scum. Remove beef to a colander and rinse under running tap water. Drain.
4. Add beef, carrots, daikon, tomatoes and celery into the simmering pot and bring to a boil. Then simmer for about 2 hours or until beef is tender.
5. Just before the soup is done, heat oil in a wok and fry sliced onion until wilted. Add garlic and fry until garlic turns brown. Tip the onion, garlic and oil into the soup.
6. Season with lots of freshly cracked black pepper.
7. Garnish with coriander leaves and spring onions before serving.


55 comments:

  1. I love your beef soup Phong Hong, in fact, I love anything beef.. I see beef only I naik gila already.. Your beef soup looks very "yap mei", like those served in Malay eateries.. I like theirs actually, compared to our normal beef stew (potato, carrot, beef chunks, cream of oxtail), coz theirs can taste the rempah rempah, and very fragrant too..No need rice, I only need 3 bowls of your beef soup, slurrpppp...

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    Replies
    1. Louiz, you can have as many bowls as you like hee..hee... This soup tastes better and better each day. It lasted me for 5 days. I eat it just like that for lunch.

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  2. hmm, I am not a "beefy" like you but I think I am more "porky".. I prefer pork and anything pork.. hamburgers, bacon, sausages, steak, chop, curry, pasta etc etc hahaha!!! but of course, I don't hate beef at all, instead your beef soup is looking nice to me especially reafing how you cooked it using that many types of spices (and effort)..

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    Replies
    1. Porky soup is also very nice with lots of vegetables. Sometimes I do my porky soup and sometimes beef. I used to like chicken soup but not so much now.

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  3. love also all the veggie you have in there.. daikon, tomatoes, celery, carrots.. ah, I can imagine those veggie absorbing the essence of the soup snd once you bite into them, the juice just ooze and SPURT and then dripping all over, wow, shyiok that is!!! and if course I don't need 3 bowls like Princess Ribbon.. one will be good enough, three will be too much to make you ask for it anymore, agree?? hahahaha..

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    Replies
    1. I wallop the whole pot also can ahh !!

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    2. hah..hah... if Louiz come to my house my soup will be very laku :D

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  4. You know I love my beef....and I love my soup....but I've never attempted to put the two together :D I'm afraid that our local beef has that strong beefy smell (that's why you need to add a lot of spices). What type of beef did you use?

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    Replies
    1. I bought the Australian beef from Aeon, the tough cut. It did have a strong smell. I have also used local beef previously.

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  5. I loves coming to your blog, your foods always makes me drooling, hehe...

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Sharon. I hope you had something to eat :)

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  6. The beef stew , is it any part of beef will do or is there any particular part? I have never bought beef before. pls advice . Thanks

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    Replies
    1. For soup and stews usually I use the tougher cuts which is much cheaper. Don't use the ones for cooking steak, yah? That one expensive and more suitable for stir fries.

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  7. Hi Phong Hong, first of all, my apologies for my MIA as have been quite occupied recently. Wow, your beef soup is indeed very delicious. The addition of spices and those ingredients surely enhanced the taste and the flavor of the beef. Thumbs up and Happy Valentine's Day to you :)

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    Replies
    1. No worries, Ivy! I enjoyed this soup very much and it is something that I will cook quite often. Hope that you have a wonderful Valentines' Day!

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  8. Hi Phong Hong,
    I do not eat beef but your soup looks utterly delicious! I can imagine how good this must be too, with either lamb or pork. Slurp....yum!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Joyce! I think this soup would work quite well with mutton just like the Indian sup kambing.

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  9. Dear sis, you are really a seducer with ur good cook skill.

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    Replies
    1. Alamak, thank you Yuza! You are very generous with your compliments :)

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  10. Hi Phong Hong,
    I like beef too ... but I prefer minced like ham burger, steak etc. Your beef soup looks like the beef noodle where I occasionally have for lunch in hawker center/food court. Love the addition of spices ... yum yum !

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    Replies
    1. Karen, if you add noodles, then you can have beef noodle soup!

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  11. I just had soup last night. Oxtail soup. Yummy. ;)

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  12. Nice to see, but won't be cooking it, because.. you know why..

    I have seen some people cook the soup first, then pour it through the sieve to separate the spice grains. They say the soup will taste better that way, rather than putting the spice into a bag like you did. For me I will prefer your method, less hassle when cleaning up XD

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    Replies
    1. Yeah, I know hah,,hah,,,, I think there is not much difference whether loose or in a bag. The flavours of the spices will get into the soup all the same.

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  13. Hi Phong Hong, I take butter, cheese and diary products but somehow or other I don't eat beef. Blame my family upbringing....????. My grandma does not allow us to eat beef or mutton in the house since young and I don't know why we take her words so 'seriously'....hehehe!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Kimmy! My partner also does not take beef. I think many Chinese don't take beef but I love my beef hee..hee...

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  14. Such a lovely color. It feels strange cooking this for CNY but it will definitely be on my menu post CNY.

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  15. Ooooo...I like! Comfort food! My girl would love this too!

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    Replies
    1. Beef lover will love this soup. Can add noodles to it too!

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  16. I like this type of soups very much, good that you remind me of them!

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  17. Hi Phong Hong,
    I always love this type of flavorful soup!
    Now I am craving for a bowl :p
    mui

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. mui mui, I hope that you cook this soup one day!

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  18. Very hearty soup! I know I will love this as this is a one bowl meal, no need to eat other vegetables and meat, all available in your soup.

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    Replies
    1. Mun, I love this type of meals as it is so convenient and hassle free. Only one bowl to wash :)

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  19. Ahhhh....this is just my kind of soup. Now I must go and get the beef for soup. Just 1 dish meal, so yummy and easy to cook.

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    Replies
    1. Nancy, if you love beef, then this soup is for you!

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  20. Wwaaah Phong Hong, I lurve anything beef. This soup must be good with the lovely vegetable ingredients plus those side herbs and spices added. Need to cook this for my Dad one day ☺ Thank U for sharing!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Janice! Hope that you try this soup. I think your Dad will like it :)

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  21. Hi Phong Hong, HAPPY VALENTINES DAY TO YOU. Your comfort soup look so appetizing.

    P/S Will be back, now busy till exhausted already.
    Amelia

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    Replies
    1. Hi Amelia! Thank you for your wishes :) Yeah I know that you most likely baking tons and tons of cookies hee..hee...

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  22. Hi Phong Hong,

    I'm not a very beef person but I still cook beef for my meat loving husband and son. I have to show them your blog and ask them if they like beef soup for their dinner :D

    Zoe

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    Replies
    1. Hi Zoe! Hmm...I wonder if your two boys like beef soup with added spices. If they do, then this is the soup for them!

      Delete
  23. Your photography skills and food presentation really made this soup very delicious looking. Yum! Yum!

    I rarely eat beef as my wife is a vegan for this season. Beef soup is not easy to find anywhere.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, TM! My partner does not eat beef too, so that soup was all for me :)

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