Thursday, March 25, 2010

A Manly-Man Birthday

Beef Pasandey - go bold or go home!

It was DH's birthday this week. In honor of this special occasion, dear readers, I'd like to present one of his all-time favorite dishes to you. Let me tell you though, this isn't a recipe for the faint of heart. It's earthy, it's deep, it's layered, it's soulful, it's spicy, it's rich, and most of all, it's
meaty. And in a strange way, it actually tells you a lot about DH himself. Because although DH, and every other red-blooded Pakistani male I know, gets really excited about this dish, it's one that certain ladies with discerning taste (ahem, oui, c'est moi) also secretly drool over. I say "secretly" because we're ladies, and we would never drool in public!

Back to DH. Hmmm. That reminds of this Old Spice body wash advert running on TV here in the US these days - "Look at your man, now look at me, now look at him again, now back to
me". AHAHAHAHAAAAAaaaaaaaauuuhhhh, ahem. Sorry. The post-pregnant mind y'see. She wanders.

Seriously now, back to DH. One of the reasons I say this dish reminds me of him is because DH is a guy's guy all the way, talking sports and cars till the cows come home, but he also has the secret superpower to charm the pants off any woman! Ok, wait, maybe not
any woman, probably just me. But the ladies do love him, and can I tell you why? Every single girl out there will get it the minute I say it. Because he listens. Oh yes, he really truly does. And he responds, even going so far as to try and understand. There is nothing better than being madly in love with a man who turns out to be your best friend. And that's where I'm going to stop talking about DH in public, before I embarrass him further.

Beef Pasandey
Serves 4-6

Click here for printable recipe

2 lbs beef fillets, sliced about 1/4 inch thick
2 tsp meat tenderizer powder (optional)
1.5 tsp garlic, crushed
1.5 tsp ginger, crushed
1 tsp poppy seeds (khus khus)
1/2 tsp black cumin seeds
1/2 tsp white cumin seeds
6 peppercorns
6 green cardamom
3 cloves
1-2 tsp red chili powder
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 tbsp gram flour (besan)
1/2 cup oil
1 large white onion, sliced
4 small hot green chillies, sliced
1 cup yogurt, whipped
1.5 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
2 tbsp lemon or lime juice
Sliced onion rings for garnish (optional)

1. Grind together the poppy seeds, cumin seeds, peppercorns, cardamom and cloves.

2. In a large bowl, combine the ground spices with the ginger, garlic, gram flour, red chili powder, turmeric, salt, meat tenderizer powder (if using), and yogurt. Mix well to make a thick paste.

3. Add in the beef fillets and coat them well with the paste. Marinate overnight.
4. The next day, heat oil in a large pan, and saute onions till golden-brown. Add the marinated fillets to the pan, with all of the marinade. Add in half the green chillies. Now cover and cook on low heat for an hour or so, stirring occasionally till meat is completely tender and sauce is thickened to your liking. I add a bit of water at this point, because I adore the gravy, but this is traditionally a dry meat dish, so you can omit the water if you wish.

5. To finish it off, throw in the cilantro, remaining green chillies and the lime juice. Stir to combine, then turn off the heat and serve. The best accompaniment to this is a type of pakistani bread called sheermal - it's slightly sweet and thick and decadent - and you can find it in the freezer section of most Indian/Pakistani specialty stores. Or you can substitute parathas, and they work beautifully too.

Verdict: Man. Oh. Man. This stuff is good enough to make me bite my fingers off as I'm digging into this. It's fantastic as a party recipe. Although the recipe is quite lengthy, you can see how easy the dish actually is to put together. The work is all in the marinade, that's it. But oh, the flavors, dear readers! They sing! So although half the fun in making this dish for me is to see DH's smile light up my heart - and it is an amazing one, dimples n all - the other half is purely for my own selfish satisfaction.
Guess what we're having for dinner this weekend, hon?! Happy Birthday DH!


Unknown said...

My Hubbs is pakistani too, so something tells me i better bookmark this.Happy belated birthday to your hubby.
Why do all pakistani men insist on super high maintenance dishes. I swear, if i am not crying tears of frustration into a curry, its just not up to par LOL.
Hey, be sure to check out my new and improved blog daaaaaahling. I'd love to know what you think. Also, I'm doing a give away, so be sure to enter.
*kisses* HH

Finla said...

Belate b'day wishes to your hubby.
I am also secretly drooling over this.
Well i have to admit my hubby doesn't like sports or car like your hubby, but still all the woman are behind him, which i tease him over, ofcourse he is a charmer, otherwise i would not have fell for him. Then he is a musician :-)

Mona said...

Even my hubby goes gaga over this meaty and masaaledaar dish. Whenever I ask him what to cook for dinner when I am out of ideas, Pasinde is his answer, almost always.
Inshallah I will try your version, looks deelish!

Hayley said...

I'm glad you enjoyed the dish..Happy B'day to your DH..

Joanne said...

This is adorable! you guys sound like you have such a great relationship. I hope that when I finally find someone I will connect with him as much as you guys seem to. My only stipulation - that he be a good eater!

That being said. I think this dish may be the key to any man's heart. Heck. It might be the key to my heart. Gotta try it and find out...

Cool Lassi(e) said...

It certainly looks like a very flavorful dish with all the ingredients going into the marinade. I will have to try this with Lamb though.

RV @ Food for 7 Stages said...

It is truly a soulful dish Muneeba. Belated birthday wishes to your husband.

Anonymous said...

A very satisfying dish, I need to try it for sure! Happy birthday to your husband!

Sook said...

Oh wow, that looks so scrumptious! I have never tried it but it looks great! Happy birthday to your husband!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Happy Birthday DH! Everything looks so good! wonderful!



Deeba PAB said...

Happy birthday to dear DH! I want to make pasandey soon. My aunt used to make a mean dish, and yours tempts me to try! It does look finger licking good!

Unknown said...

Lovely dish! Must make for my hubby too. Perfect description of DH!

Foodiewife said...

Muneeba, what a lovely tribute to your husband. I loved the way you compared this dish to his character traits. I thought I was the only one who gushed about my husband! My own man has introduced me to these kinds of flavors, and I have grown to love them and I'm getting braver with spices. Truly, this is a dish I want to make time to experiment with. What a beautiful symphony of flavors!

nandini said...

Birthday Wishes to your husband!. This dish certainly sounds and looks great!!. Since i dont eat beef i am going to try it with mutton!.

Amy B. said...

Belated happy birthday to him! Hope you guys had a great time! wonderful dish by the way :)

Maria said...

Wow! I can see why this is a favorite. Love everything about it!

Unknown said...

My miya would absolutely relish this spicy pasandey.:D

Duchess of Tea said...

Hello my darling, I am sorry I have been a bit absent lately! I am finally getting to catch up, I needed some me time to relax and to get rid of my never-ending migraines. I see that a Happy Belated Birthday is in order for dear hubby. Sending him my good wishes. Darling, how is Prince Bashaar doing fo late. I need to go back and read all your posts to see what little miracles he has performed, this ~ bringer of happiness ~ of yours. Kiss his cute face for me and give him a huge hug. Have a lovely weekend.

Love & Hugs