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Beef Bhuna Bangladeshi Curry

Beef bhuna is a glorious Bangladeshi curry much beloved of the British Curry house, easily identified by its delicious, spicy & thick sauce.

I love using beef in curries, it matches so well with my favourite Indian “herb”, fenugreek.

Beef bhuna or bhuna gosht curry with rice, poppadoms and kachumber salad.

Bhuna Gosht

A Bhuna (pronounced boona) curry is probably one of the most common dishes on a British Indian Curry House menu.

Gosht means meat and in many recipes would refer to lamb, but for me this recipe works wonderfully beef!

A bhuna curry is typified by its rich, heavily spiced, thick and unctuous sauce. For me, it should cling to the meat, above all, it should not be a gravy in the bottom of the bowl.

A Bhuna curry hails from Bangladesh and North-East India.

This explains its popularity in the British Midlands much of the Indian migration to this area is from the Bengali region. As a result, many of the hundreds of Indian restaurants I grew up with feature Bengali food.

This recipe just like my beef dopiaza, methi gosht, minced beef curry and beef vindaloo sings with the almost sweet nutty earthy flavour of fenugreek. It even features in my Anglo Indian beef sausage curry!

Typically a bhuna is only cooked in its own juices.

My beef bhuna adds a little tomato into the mix, because beef and tomato in a curry just works.

Be sure to check out my lamb bhuna, king prawn bhuna and vegetable bhuna recipes to round out your repertoire of one of the most popular British Indian curry recipes.

Overhead beef bhuna or bhuna gosht curry with poppadoms, raita and kachumber salad.

Frequently Asked Questions

What cut of beef should I use?

This bhuna is a slow-cooked dish, so go for something robust with a bit of fat, I like shin of beef personally speaking.

It is a cut of meat that I use in everything from my Thai Massaman beef curry through to my take on beef osso bucco!

If you wanted something a little leaner look for some rump or round for my US-based readers.

How hot is a bhuna curry?

Generally speaking, it is a curry with a medium heat, but that does not mean that everyone will find it medium.

Tolerance to capsaicin is incredibly personal, if you are sensitive to heat then feel free to tone it down. If you like it hot hot hot, then throw in lots of green chilli towards the end of the cooking process.

Do I have to use Kashmiri chilli powder?

No, but I would urge you to start using it for Indian-based dishes.

It packs a huge amount of flavour without being overly hot, this means that you can use a lot and get loads of chilli flavour and maintain the use of your taste buds.

A note for US-based readers!

Tomato puree to us Brits means tomato concentrate, I use a 22-24% concentrate. I believe that tomato puree in the US is what we call passata.

Close-up beef bhuna or bhuna gosht curry in an iron karahi.

Serving Suggestions

This bhuna dish is a thick curry and to me, that usually means it gets served with chapatis.

But for this recipe I went full-on curry feast.

As a result, it got served with boiled rice, poppadoms, kachumber salad and a minty yoghurt raita.

If you wanted to stick with the curry you can really go to town with the rice and this recipe loves sweetness.

Therefore something like this cashew and raisin pilaf rice would work wonderfully.

Spicy beef bhuna curry or bhuna gosht served with rice.

Equipment Used

I only mention specific brands of equipment if I think they make a material difference to a recipe. If you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comments section below the recipe.

  • Stovetop.
  • 24cm or 10″ saucepan with a lid.
  • Chopping board.
  • Kitchen knife.
  • Weighing scales and or measuring cups and spoons.
  • Stirring and serving spoons.
Spicy beef bhuna curry or bhuna gosht served with rice.
Yield: 2 Servings

Beef Bhuna Curry Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours 30 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 40 minutes

Bhuna is a perennial favourite in the British Indian Curry house and my beef bhuna works that typical thick clingy fragrant gravy heavy with fenugreek.

Ingredients

  • 400g (14 oz) Beef
  • 2 Tbsp Ghee
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • 30g (Thumb Sized Piece) Ginger
  • 2 Green Chilli Peppers
  • 250g (1⅔ Cup) Onion
  • 1 Tsp Turmeric
  • 1 Tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 Tsp Ground Coriander
  • ½ Tsp Ground Cumin
  • 2 Tsp Kashmiri Chili Powder
  • 400g (3 Medium) Tomatoes
  • 100ml (⅓ Cup + 1 Tbsp) Water
  • 2½ Tbsp Tomato Puree
  • ½ Tsp Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Dried Fenugreek Leaves
  • ½ Tsp Salt

Instructions

  1. Slice the green chillies as finely as you can.
  2. Chop the ginger and garlic into as fine a dice as you can manage.
  3. Peel, top and tail then onion then cut in half before slicing into 1cm thick half-moon shapes.
  4. Cut the beef into 3-4cm (1½") cubes.
  5. Heat the ghee in a 24cm or 10" saucepan over a medium heat.
  6. Add the chilli, ginger and garlic and cook gently for 30 seconds.
  7. Throw in the onions and cook for 5 minutes.
  8. Add in the cumin, ground coriander, chilli powder, turmeric and garam masala and stir to toast for 60 seconds.
  9. Roughly chop the tomatoes into a 1.5cm (½") dice.
  10. Add the tomatoes, tomato puree, sugar and water and cook for 10 minutes.
  11. When the tomatoes have begun to break down and the sauce has thickened a little season your beef generously with salt.
  12. Add the seasoned beef to the pan with the fenugreek leaves and stir.
  13. Cover with a lid and cook covered on a low simmer for 60 minutes.
  14. Remove the lid and cook for a further 90-120 minutes on low until the sauce is thick and unctuous.
  15. Stir the curry every 12-15 minutes for this last hour adding a splash of water if need to keep it moist.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 866Total Fat: 54gSaturated Fat: 24gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 24gCholesterol: 207mgSodium: 780mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 8gSugar: 16gProtein: 60g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

Did you make this recipe?

If you made this recipe, I'd love to see what you did and what I can do better, share a picture with me on Instagram and tag me @krumplibrian and tell me how it went!

Ali

Sunday 5th of November 2023

Hi I am thinking of making this for a family gathering as it is my favorite curry and has great reviews.

Do you think it would work in the slow cooker from stage 11 please? Just checking this is a table spoon of Fenugreek Leaves for 2 people? Thanks.

Brian Jones

Monday 13th of November 2023

Hi Ali...

This is one of my favourite curries and it always seems very popular with visitors to my site :)

1) Unfortunately slow cookers don't reduce down the sauce enough in this recipe, I have tried and it results in a very wet curry and because there is no evaporation the flavours do not develop in the same way. 2) Yes, I use a load of fenugreek in this recipe, if you feel that it is too much to your taste reduce it by half at the start and then crush in the rest at the end of the process if you think that it can take more.

Enjoy

Brian

James Phillips

Sunday 22nd of October 2023

What cut of beef is best to use? Also can’t get fenugreek leaves what can I substitute?

Brian Jones

Monday 23rd of October 2023

Hi James

I mention in the post that my preference is for shin of beef in this recipe, but any stewing beef will see you alright and if it has a bit of fat and sinew in it then even better.

As for a fenugreek substitute, there really isn't one, it is a unique flavour. You could look at using dried fenugreek powder, but be aware once the packet is open then it loses it's flavour very quickly, but you could add a half teaspoon of it at section 8.

Enjoy

Brian

Marian

Saturday 19th of August 2023

Best one I have found yet. Found the Kashmiri chilli on line but had to get the flakes and grind them myself as couldn’t wait for them to come . Found the fenugreek an hour away tho. Really good curry😋

Brian Jones

Saturday 26th of August 2023

Excellent, glad you found the ingredients and it was worth the hunting.

Marian

Friday 18th of August 2023

Have just found this recipe and can’t wait to try it tonight. Might not be able to get the Kashmiri chilli or fenugreek here tho. Looks brilliant thank you.

Mike

Tuesday 15th of August 2023

Are the 2 green chilli peppers bell peppers or some other type?

Brian Jones

Saturday 26th of August 2023

No they are chilli peppers, depending where you are will define what you can get your hands on, I use finger chillies in the UK.

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