Here's the kill.
Not quite a year ago (that's my brother Dave, who spent the night here Tuesday, on business), and I still have some in the freezer. This is the very last of the steaks—it's ground meat and sausage from here out. I've done sous vide and a few other ways, but I'm using the last of the steaks for Massaman Curry. He's headed to Montana next week, and so hopefully I'll be replenished.
First, you need massaman curry paste. I get mine from local Asian markets, like 99 Ranch. But what the hell, Matt Stone makes his own and that's a value you can tap into no matter what. Or, you can get it online, and that product is basically the same as I get at the market.
I've blogged about numerous massaman dishes over the years—it being about my favorite taste in the world—but this is the first time I've done it in a crock pot. I have, in the past, added a dollop of massaman paste to something like a pot roast just to get un certain je' ne sais quoi sort of deal, but this is full blown. After you have secured the curry paste, you need meat. While this is wild elk, you can also use beef, lamb, probably even goat.
You're best off browning it and my preferred method of browning is with ghee, lard / bacon drippings, or coconut oil in a wok, which facilitates tossing, so you don't have to turn.
Works great; no mess, done in a couple of minutes.
OK, so never having done it this way, I was looking primarily for meat that's spoon tender. Beatrice and I go to Thai restaurants now and then and massaman beef is almost always one of the dishes we have. We are very, very particular about the tenderness of the meat and if we get a tough batch—no matter how tasty the sauce—we won't be back.
So to make sure the meat is going to be very tender, the crock pot is ideal. The browned meat went in, along with about 1-2 cups of beef stock, 2 cans of coconut milk, and 2 whopping, heaping tablespoons of curry paste. Oh, and yea, 2 small handfulls of "blister" peanuts from Trader Joe's. Massaman is simply not complete without the peanuts, but TJ's has this brand made in the old fashioned way: soaked for a long time before roasting, the better way to ancestrally prepare legumes.
That spent an hour on high, and then from about 1pm until dinner at 7, on low.
The other things you need: onion sliced into wedges, white sweet potato, and carrots. You can add a bit of Thai fish sauce too, but I never bother. However, these things don't need to be added until the final hour of cooking. That way, they will still be firm, but tender.
Oh, yea, I had a smidgen of red bell pepper from the liver recipe the other day, so I chopped finely and put that in for some added color.
The rice is jasmine, i.e., Thai rice. For the 2 cups of dry rice, I used 2 cups of beef stock and 2 cups of water in the rice cooker.
...Well, it's just about time for lunch leftovers, as the rice cooker is still keeping the rice warm & ready and hot massaman curry is only a nuking away. So, if you'll excuse me...
Another post on Anarchy "at home and in your spare time" is coming up later this afternoon, and I'm having a very fun time putting these together. ...Incidentally, no State was involved in the making of this dish.