RECIPE: Classic masala tomato stew


YOU Home Cooking
by Esther Malan
Human & Rousseau
Recommended selling price: R290
240 pages

Home Cooking is a selection of Esther Malan’s mouthwatering recipes from her popular Take Five food column in You and Drum magazines. The recipes range from delicious ideas for breakfast, quiches and pies, to braais, chicken, street food, and quick and healthy salads, as well as puddings and baked goodies.

Everything is tested in the You kitchen, which ensures the recipes are foolproof and will work again and again.

Tomato stew will always be a popular dish for South Africans. We’ve added roasted masala as a twist to this recipe; use stewing meat on the bone to ensure optimum heartiness.


  • 750g stewing beef (with bone)
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 30ml olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 5ml chilli flakes
  • 15ml to 30ml roasted masala
  • 100g tomato paste
  • 250ml beef stock
  • 750ml water
  • 1 tin whole tomatoes
  • 30ml brown sugar
  • 15ml lemon juice

To serve

  • fresh oregano
  • toasted ciabatta slices
  • baby tomatoes
vat 5

1. Season the meat with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a large pot and fry the meat in batches until golden brown. Remove and set aside.

2. Fry the garlic and onions until caramelised. Add the chilli flakes and masala and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the tomato paste and mix well.

3. Return the meat to the pot and pour the stock over it. Add the water and bring to the boil. Simmer until the meat is tender (about one hour, depending on the meat). Add more water if necessary.

4. Add the tomatoes, sugar and lemon juice, and simmer for another 15 minutes. Season with more salt and pepper if needed.

5. Serve with fresh oregano, ciabatta and baby tomatoes.

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