Thai Red Curry Beef with Mushroom Red Bell Pepper and Basil

I don't know about you but I'm getting pretty fed up with this summer's heat. This year's propagation of heatwave after heatwave has me staring at my suitcase, ready to pack my bags for Siberia. I'm looking forward to the days when I can comfortably make hot chocolate, slip on a thick wool sweater and snuggle with my little one without the sticky perspiration between us. Most of all I'm looking forward to that day in early autumn when I pull down my cast iron pot and instead of shooing away the heat, we huddle around the kitchen for warmth that reminded us of how good we had it this summer. 

Okay that last part may never happen but I'm looking forward to cooler days and heartier meals such as this Thai red curry beef dish that isn't quite light enough for summer nor is it heavy enough for winter but somewhere in a happy medium where I'd like to be right now. It is a flavorful dish with a wide spectrum of notes from lime, spicy curry to pungent onions and herby basil. The fish sauce gives the dish depth and an extra dimension of umami, while the creamy coconut milk rounds out the strong flavors and adds a bit of weight to the sauce. 

Thai Red Curry Beef with Mushroom Red Bell Pepper and Basil
Slightly adapted from The Perfect Pantry
  • 1 lb ground beef (93% lean) 
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh lime juice 
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar 
  • 2 Tablespoons fish sauce (I use Three Crabs brand
  • 1 small bunch of scallions (6-8), thinly sliced 
  • 1 small red bell pepper, diced 
  • 4 large white mushrooms, sliced 
  • A scant 1/4 cup Massaman curry or red Thai curry
  • 6 oz coconut milk (I use Native Forest)
  • 2 teaspoon basil, roughly chopped 
  1. In a wok or deep frying pan set over medium heat, brown the beef, breaking it up with a spatula as it cooks. (Don't add any fat to the pan; the meat will render enough fat to cook.) 
  2. In a small bowl, mix together the lime juice, brown sugar and fish sauce, and set aside. When the beef is browned, raise the heat to medium-high, and add the scallions, red bell pepper and mushrooms to the pan. Stir-fry for 2 minutes, until the pepper is just warmed through. Add the curry paste to the wok, and stir for 1 minute. Then, pour in the coconut milk, and stir to combine. Let the dish simmer for 1 minute, and pour in the fish sauce mixture. Stir for 1 minute. Serve over rice or lettuce leaves. Garnish with basil, and serve hot or at room temperature.


Ko said...

I am so sorry about the long, long heatwave in Pennsylvania. I wish I could pack and ship a cargo of cool breeze from San Francisco Bay for you. Hope cooler evening coming soon in Philadelphia. Anyway this post, Thai red curry beef sounds great! I would definitely try it this week. Take care,

P.S Your last post Vietnamese rice noodle is really good too!
I enjoyed it. Thank you,

Belinda @zomppa said...

I am so with you! My favorite favorite season is the fall...while I do love warm summer nights, I'm not feeling the oven that seems to have descended on the city for the last, oh, three months. The heat in this dish is what I prefer!

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

I love food like this that help you scoot into the next season comfortably. I always have a bottle of fish sauce on my shelf waiting for a new recipe. As always, your photos are gorgeous Christine.

tasteofbeirut said...

You took words right of my mouth! I am barely able to function some days, the heat coupled with humidity is just unbearable; plus people are fasting during the day and drive like maniacs. Ok enough complaining, Fall be be here soon enough!
Love your thai dish, love these types of Thai curries, they never disappoint, also the photo is beautiful!

A Canadian Foodie said...

Another lovely and lively one bowl meal that is flavour and texture packed! I love meals like this. Thank you! Cannot wait to try it - and yes, the heat has definitely turned me into a SLUG.

Gloria said...

I heard the hot is hortible there; hope change, i thi.k the weather is crazy; here is winter. But really love fall:)
Hope our summer will not so hot!
Thiddish look delicious!

SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

We have finally had a respite from the heat the past few days and it feels wonderful! Perhaps the cooler Wisconsin weather will drift toward you soon.

This looks like a delicious way to welcome in cooler weather. So flavorful and delicious!!

The Squishy Monster said...

I've never even thought to use ground beef in something like this, I'll have to give it a try soon! Looks amazing!

Barbara said...

I know the heat's been terrible, Christine. Hopefully, you've had a respite now.
A beautiful photo fitting for a lovely Thai Beef dish! What I like best are most of the ingredients are on hand in most of our pantries.

Angie's Recipes said...

Autumn is almost hold on!
Your red curry beef looks very tasty.

Meg {henninglove} said...

i love love thai food and their curries. this dish looks great thanks for sharing

Velva said...

It looks like you are getting an early start on your autumn meal. This looks delicious!

I am over the heat too. So ready for cooler temps. Living in Florida, it will be November before I really tell the difference (ugh).


Amy (Savory Moments) said...

I concur with being tired of the heat wave. It's been so incredibly hot this summer. Your curry looks great! Curry is one of my most favorite meals.

About Last Weekend said...

We are the opposite here in the East Bay, Ca, cooler and foggy in the morning and nice in the afternoons. I love the real heat though which is why I'd like this dish. Sounds like a great array of flavours

Andrea said...

Great dish!

I'm looking forward to fall, too! :)

kyleen said...

I'm done with the heat too. It's insane how hot it gets during the afternoon sometimes! This curry dish looks delicious, summer or winter.

Lori Lynn said...

I like that it is made with ground beef. Looks delicious.

Sara said...

This looks amazing! I wonder if I could use bison instead of beef? Yum.

Diana said...

This looks so warming Christine! I'm with you, I'm really anxious for the cooler weather to come our way. It's been one HOT summer!