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Sunday, October 2, 2011

Black Velvet: a Japanese Beef Curry

Do you have a dish that you have always dreamt of perfecting? I do! In my case, it is Japanese Curry.

Japanese Beef Curry

Japanese beef curry is a well-balanced velvety curry dish that has layers of flavors, without one single flavor overpowering the rest. The easiest and most common way of making Japanese curry is to buy a good pre-made curry base and mix with sauteed vegetables and meat. But of course, the more challenging the better, right? ;) I tried a lot of recipes before developing my own version. I am happy to finally arrive at this Japanese Beef Curry.

Jason's Bowl

Japanese Curry
Serves 4-6
  • 1lb beef chuck, cut into 1-2" pieces (can substitute other meats)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup of flour, separated
  • 2 tbsp of oil
  • 4 tbsp of butter, separated
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 2.5 tbsp of curry powder
  • 1 tbsp of tomato paste
  • 1 tsp of minced ginger
  • 1 cup of red wine (I used a Bordeaux blend, Merlot would work well too)
  • 2 cups of beef broth
  • 2 cups of chicken broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 small peeled, pureed, apple
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 large potato, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 3 tbsp of butter
  • 1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 tbsp worchestershire sauce
  • Jasmine rice, for serving
  • Cilantro, for garnish
  1. Season beef chuck pieces with salt, pepper, and flour. Shake off excess flour. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven and brown beef on all sides. Remove beef and set aside.
  2. Add 1 tbsp of butter to the Dutch oven and reduce heat to medium-low. Add onions and a dash of salt. Cook onions until caramelized (about 30 minutes).
  3. Add minced garlic, 1/2 tbsp of curry powder, tomato paste, and minced ginger. Mix well. Add beef and red wine. Bring to a boil and let it reduce until you have about 1/3 of the original mixture. Add beef broth, chicken broth, bay leaf, and apple to Dutch oven. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to low. Cover and let it simmer for 3 hours.
  4. 40 minutes before beef is done, parboil carrots and potatoes (about 10 minutes). Add them to Dutch oven to simmer with beef for the last 30 minutes.
  5. For the roux, melt 3 tbsp of butter over medium-low heat in a small saucepan. Add 1/4 cup of flour and 2 tbsp of curry powder, stirring until you have a thick paste. Add cayenne pepper and fresh ground pepper, incorporating them into the roux. Add ketchup and worchestershire sauce to saucepan. Continue to cook until paste starts crumbling. Remove from heat and set aside until meat and vegetables are ready.
  6. Ladle some broth from Dutch oven into the paste mixture and stir until dissolved and well incorporated. Now add the roux mixture back into the Dutch oven, stir well to thicken the curry. Garnish with chopped cilantro. Serve hot, over rice.


  1. Sounds flavorful and perfect for a chilly fall night.

  2. even though we eat beaf .. the husband likes it as grilled only. But the curry sounds delicious.. will try with chicken sometime.

  3. We the Japanese tend to think a thought of curry is contagious. Now I MUST make curry soon!!! Your version looks soooo good. Lots of good stuff in there and I bet this was a huge success! Looks so delicious too!

  4. oh my goodness, i've been aching to find a recipe to mimic that velvety taste from the box! :D i'm gonna try veganizing this! thanks jessica :)

  5. Very curry and favorable Japanese curry recipe. I am glad you already master this recipe for me to try on . . .

  6. Homemade is always best! The layers of flavors sound great in this curry.

  7. Sounds absolutely delicious. Love your Japanese bowl.

  8. My god, this is a perfect meal for me most nights of the week. That beef looks so tender and I'm salivating at the thought of all the ingredients mixed together. Looks like Jas missed a spot though..