Crispy Chilli Beef (Sambal Balado)
This is a simpler and easier to make Indonesian equivalent of the Sichuan Crispy Beef, it doesn't have a heap of sugar like the chinese one either.
600-700 g Beef Topside
600 ml water, more if needed to cover beef
6-8 Tbsp Peanut or vegetable oil
1 Onion, thinly sliced or chopped
8 Garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced or chopped
3 Tbsp Hot Chili paste (Sambal Oelek or similar)
Salt to taste
200 g Tomatoes, chopped
(You can cheat like me and buy a jar of the Sambal Balado sauce ready made from your favourite Asian foods shop, the texture is finer than the above recipe would make, but it has good flavour and a decent chilli kick)
Place the beef and water in a large saucepan, bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
After cooking, drain the beef, set aside to cool.
Once cold enough to handle, slice the beef as thinly as possible, then cut into 5 cm squares or strips. Dry with paper towels.
Heat half the oil in a large frying pan or wok, add the dried beef slices/strips and fry for 5 minutes, turning regularly, until the beef is browned and dry (less time if you want a slightly softer texture, also add extra chillis at this stage if you want a hotter result). If making the sauce and not using the ready-made version, remove with slotted spoon and set aside.
Wipe the frying pan/wok with paper towels then heat the remaining oil in the pan/wok, add the onion and garlic, stir fry for 3 minutes.
Add the chilli paste, tomatoes and salt (or lemon juice), mix well and cook for 5 minutes.
Return the beef to the pan and stirfy for 5 minutes. I sometimes add some roasted unsalted peanuts too. Serve immediately.