Fatima's Cape Malay Curry

READY IN: 1hr 10mins
Recipe by Zurie

Sifting through my mother's falling-apart notebooks with recipes I came upon this one in my own hardwriting, and memories came flooding back. I got this from a Malay lady (Cape Muslim) when I was a young college student, and fascinated by the smells of the Bo-Kaap, the Malay Quarter of Cape Town. I do not guarantee this recipe, and would like feedback, should you try it. One has to smile at the amount of garlic she uses, and by no means do you have to use so much! I just did not want to change her ingredients. Do keep in mind that every Malay cook does her own interpretation of their aromatic dishes, so there are many variations!

Top Review by JustJanS

Zurie, your mum was obviously way ahead of her time (and my mum) who thought a curry consited of curry powder, apples and sultanas and some sort of meat (and never any garlic in there)! I made this as part of my son's birthday dinner tonight and this was his favourite dish on the night. I made half a recipe and took your mother's advice and used 1 whole bulb of garlic (about 10 cloves) which was not at all too much. This is a perfect curry for those of you a bit wary about cooking your first ever curry-simple but with great results.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Fry onions in oil until softened, then add the cinnamon stick and cardamom.
  2. Cut meat in small chunks and add.
  3. Add the peeled, chopped ginger, garlic, turmeric, masala and chopped hot peppers. Stir and let fry a little.
  4. Chop the tomatoes and add to the pot with the sugar. Turn heat down, put lid on, and simmer slowly until meat is tender.
  5. Serve with rice.

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a