Monday, April 24, 2017

Slow Cooker Thai Coconut Beef

 I was looking for different recipe ideas for my slow cooker. Ever since I got my new Pixar slow cooker, I've been using it ALL the time!!  So it was definitely time for some new slow cooker recipes. I mean, yes, you have your pulled pork, and your chili, but I wanted something new.
 Lately I've been in the mood for more spicy flavors. Not necessarily HOT and spicy, but just flavorful and spicy. So I decided to search for flavors from other cultures, which is RIGHT in my wheelhouse. Side note... Fun fact: Every year, I choose a different international restaurant at which to celebrate my birthday. Indian, Mexican, Chinese, Italian, Japanese. True story! Anyway, when I found this Thai inspired recipe, I figured ok this one covers all bases. It's perfect! Lots of different ingredients, extremely full of flavor, and it's SO easy, you won't even believe it. Also, you don't even have to go to a specialty store to get the ingredients. Everything is readily available at your local supermarket! Now, I know it may seem a little odd to add peanut butter and coconut to a beef recipe, but seriously, it all works REALLY well. Just go with it! You'll be glad you did!

1 boneless beef chuck roast (3 pounds), halved
 1 teaspoon salt 
1 teaspoon pepper 
1 large sweet red pepper, sliced 
1 can (13oz)) coconut milk 
3/4 cup beef stock 
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter 
1/4 cup red curry paste 
2 tablespoons soy sauce 
2 tablespoons honey 
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger root 
1/2 pound fresh sugar snap peas, trimmed 
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro 
Cooked brown or white rice 
Toppings, if desired:
thinly sliced green onions, chopped peanuts, hot sauce, and/or lime wedges

 Place beef and pepper slices in a 5-qt. slow cooker. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. In a bowl, whisk coconut milk, beef stock, peanut butter, curry paste, soy sauce, honey and ginger; pour over meat. Cook, covered, on low 7-8 hours or until meat is tender. Remove beef; cool slightly. Skim fat from reserved juices. Shred beef with two forks. Return beef to slow cooker; stir in snap peas. Cook, covered, on low 45-60 minutes longer or until peas are crisp-tender. Stir in cilantro. Serve with rice and, if desired, toppings of your choice. 

Instead of shredding the beef, I just cut it into cubes before placing it in the slow cooker, just as one would do for a regular beef stew. You could also just buy beef cubes. I very much prefer large chunks of beef rather than shreds, in this particular instance. But you do you!
For extra added flavor, use beef stock to cook your rice instead of water. Makes the best rice ever!
If you are not a fan of cilantro, just use fresh parsley instead!
Wanna add a little heat? Add some chopped chilis or a little crushed red pepper flakes! 
Btw, I really like the sliced green onions on top. They're definitely more than just a garnish. That little hit of onion flavor is amazing!

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