Japanese Beef Curry (ビーフカレーの作り方)

Japanese Curry Rice or Karē Raisu (カレーライス) is extremely popular dish for all ages in Japan and it is considered one of the country’s national dishes along with ramen and gyoza! This Japanese beef curry dish takes a bit of preparation but the end result is super delicious! Curry was introduced to Japan by the British in late 1800s in the form of curry powder, and it was adapted to Japanese taste. The flavor of Japanese curry is quite different from Indian or Thai curry. Japanese curry is thicker, milder, and sweeter and always served with rice. We don’t have the choices of yellow, red, or green curry like Thai curry, but instead there are usually three degrees of spiciness indicating mild, medium hot, or hot.




Yields: 6 servings

3 onions 3 carrots 1 russet potato 8 mushrooms 2 lb lean beef stew meat Kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil 2 Tbsp unsalted butter 2 cloves garlic (minced) 1 inch ginger (grated) 1 Tbsp curry powder 2 Tbsp tomato paste 1 cup red wine 1.9 litres of beef stock 2 bay leaves 2 Tbsp milk 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce // Optional 1/4 apple // "I use Fuji apple, optional" Furkujinzuke // Red pickled daikon. To serve, so optional. [Curry Roux] 3 Tbsp unsalted butter 4 Tbsp all purpose flour // You can use gluten-free flour as well. 1 Tbsp curry powder 1 Tbsp garam masala ¼ tsp cayenne pepper // Optional if you don't like heat


Time to prepare: 15 mins | To cook: 1 hr 40 mins

[Curry Roux] In a small saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. When the butter is completely melted, add the flour. Stir to combine the butter and flour. Soon the butter and flour fuse and swell. Keep stirring because the roux will easily burn. Cook for 20 minutes on low heat. After 20 minutes, the roux will change to a light brown color. Add the garam masala, curry powder, and cayenne pepper. Cook and stir for 30 seconds and remove from the heat. If you don't use it immediately (for other recipes), let it cool in an airtight container with lid and store in refrigerator for a month or freezer for several months. This roux recipe yields 1/3 cup roux; enough for a curry recipe that requires 4 cups liquid, and enough to add to this beef curry recipe. If you're not sure for other recipes, make a double portion as everyone prefers different consistency for curry and you may like it thicker (requires more curry roux). [Main Curry] Cut the onion into thin slices. Cut the carrot diagonally while rotating it a quarter between cuts (in Japanese we call this cutting technique “rangiri”). Halve the potato, and then cut each piece into quarters. Soak in water for 15 minutes to remove the starch. Clean the mushrooms with a pastry brush (don’t wash mushrooms) and slice them. Cut the beef into 1 ½ inch cubes and sprinkle salt and pepper. Coat the meat with the flour. In a cast iron skillet, heat oil and butter on high heat. Add the beef but do not crowd the skillet. Do a second batch if necessary. Cook beef until brown. In a large heavy bottomed pot or large pot, heat the butter on medium heat and add the onion. Add the olive oil and stir to coat the onion with the oil. Add 1 tsp. salt after 10 minutes and sauté the onion until it’s soft and translucent. Add garlic, ginger, curry powder, and tomato paste and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the beef and the wine and let the alcohol evaporate. Add the vegetable and pour the beef broth until it covers the vegetables. Cover with the lid and bring it to a boil. When boiling, skim off the scum and fat from the soup. After skimming, I dip the fine mesh in a measuring cup to clean. It’s easy to remove the scum/fat from the fine mesh this way. Add bay leaf, cover with the lid but leaving slightly ajar, and simmer until vegetables are tender. Once in a while, skim the broth. Add the rest of beef stock (if you have any leftover and if necessary). Using a ladle and with fork/chopsticks, dissolve the curry roux. If the curry is too thick for your taste, add water to dilute. From this point, stir often and be careful not to burn the curry! Add milk and Worcestershire sauce. Grate the apple to add a hint of sweetness. Simmer uncovered on low heat, stirring occasionally, until the curry becomes thick. Serve the curry with Japanese rice on the side topped with fukujinzuke.


This worked nicely, pretty much as is. I'd say I got more than 6 servings though. Maybe 8? I had no red wine at the time so added a little red wine vinegar. Not a replacement but adds a little something. Didn't add milk as I only simmered for about an hour and it wasn't enough time to reduce the liquid enough. I didn’t use mushrooms.

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