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Aida Khan's beef khara masala

Food to Aida is love, it's a way of coming together! This is one of her traditional dishes from their home.

Beef khara masala

Serves 6


200ml sunflower oil

Khara masala

3 thickly cut matchsticks of ginger

1 whole green chilli

2 tsp cumin seeds

4 dried round whole red chillies (or long dried chillies)

2 bay leaves

6 black peppercorns

5 green cardamom pods

2 black cardamom pods

2 cinnamon sticks

2 star anise

1 tsp red chilli flakes

1 kg flank or stir-fry beef, very finely diced (steak tartare style)

15g garlic paste

15g ginger paste

2 tsp salt

2 tomatoes, roughly chopped

1 red onion, roughly sliced

Ground spices

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground coriander

½ tsp garam masala

250g full-fat natural yogurt

To garnish

Roughly chopped coriander

Chopped green chillies

Finely julienned ginger

To serve

Paratha bread


1. Khara masala: Heat oil in a heavy based pan and fry the matchsticks of ginger and whole green chilli to infuse the oil.

2. Add the cumin seeds, red chillies, bay leaves, black peppercorns, green and black cardamom pods, cinnamon sticks, star anise and chilli flakes and fry until fragrant.

3. Add the beef with the garlic and ginger paste and salt. Pan fry for about 7 minutes on a high heat.

4. Once the beef changes colour reduce the heat, add the tomatoes and onion and stir through.

5. Cover with a lid and leave to simmer for 30 minutes on a low heat.

6. Ground spices: Uncover and add the ground cumin, ground coriander and garam masala.

7. Increase the heat, stir in the yogurt, 1 tablespoon at a time while stirring until the yogurt is fully absorbed.

8. Once all the yogurt has been cooked through turn off the heat.

9. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves, green chillies and julienned ginger. Serve with paratha bread if liked.


Black cardamom pods have a strong, smoky woody flavour. They can be found in some supermarkets, or they can be purchased online.

Khara masala translates to whole spices.

Dried round red chillies are available online or in Asian supermarkets. Use regular red dried long chillies if unavailable.

Choose beef that holds its texture when cooked such as stir-fry steak or flank.

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itv |

Weekdays 9am