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Malaysian beef soup

Recipe: Beef Soup Malaysia

By: Erna Dyanty

Malaysian beef soup

Malaysian beef soup

Malaysia being a multi racial country, it has multiple cultures intertwined into one another – even soups has its own variations. This particular recipe is a Malay style beef soup. I would make this when its rainy outside or when I’m in need for comfort food – and in need of a quick solution as a pick-me up meal.

This recipe makes up to 10 servings. You can keep this in your fridge for a good one and a half week. If frozen it can last up to a month. Best to prepare over the weekend.

Total cost: MYR 10 – 13
Preparation and cooking time: 45 – 60 minutes.
Work load: If you have a slow cooker, you can just leave it on and by the time you come home, its ready to be served.
Serves: more than 4.


300 g beef
1/2 cup of shallots
5 garlic cloves
1 carrot
2 potatoes – peeled, best to use Indian potatoes, holds better in the soup
2 small cinnamon sticks (1 inch)
4 cardamom seeds
1 tsp black whole pepper corns
1 star anise
1 inch of ginger
2 stalks of scallion chopped
2 tbsp beef or chicken granules
1 liter of water

Cooking Instruction:

1. Prepare your meat, cut them into 1 inch pieces, bite size. This will ensure the meat cooks through. Best cuts for this soup would be tenderloin and rump. Best if you can keep a bit of the fat on the meat – gives a richer taste to the soup.

2. Next, pulse your shallots and garlic. This can be done a day before or you can also pulse this in batches then freeze it. It is good to last for a week.

3. Add about 2 tbsp of oil into your pot, once the oil is heated – gently saute the onions and dried spices with the ginger till fragrant. Once you catch that fragrant smell – put in your beef and saute for about a minute, just to lightly brown the meat. Pour in the water and scallions into your pot now let it boil.

Always put your carrots and potatoes later, you do not want your vegetables to get all mushy. It has to be soft enough to the bite but not mushy. To know if your potatoes and carrots are ready, after 20 minutes pick one of each and poke it with a fork. If it slides into the vegetables easily, they are cooked.

4. For seasoning, add the granules, salt and sugar adjusting to your taste. Serve with rice, coriander leaves and sprinkles of fried shallots. The soup tends to be more saltier the longer you keep it, you can add water to the batch as you heat it up.

Glossary: (English = Malay)

tenderloin, rump : batang pinang

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