Kitchen by TILAH

Stir Fried Beef in Sweet Soya Bean Sauce (Daging Masak Kicap)

Yesterday evening, I had cooked up this dish, which IS my husband’s favourite. The recipe for this dish belongs to the professional chef whom my father married 40 years ago. Hehe… ;p who else but my beloved mother. **winks** I personally love this dish as a child and now so do my son.

This recipe uses beef. My mum sliced beef chunks into smaller pieces and braised (by boiling) them till they are soft and tender and uses its stock for this dish. However, for a working mum like me, I always have to rush with everything and in order to save time, I substituted the beef chunks with Beef Sukiyaki slices. All I did was to cut the sliced pieces into smaller pieces and stir fry them straight into the pan. The juices and oil released by the frying beef slices will add to the flavour once you add in water thereby substituting the beef stock used in this dish.

You can substitute the beef with your favourite chicken pieces too. When I use chicken meat for this dish, I would marinate the chicken pieces in some turmeric powder and salt and fry them first.  I usually add the fried chicken pieces together with the tomatoes.  I would also add 2 pieces of star anise into the ingredients list below to be sauteed together with the cinnamon, cloves and cardamoms. It is a must for my mum to add star anise along with cinnamon, cardamoms and cloves when she cooks chicken meat.

A tip from my mother is that star anise enhances the flavour of your chicken dishes. Beef can make do without star anise but not chicken.

Another tip from my mother is never to use cinnamon, cardamoms, cloves or star anise when cooking seafood or fish.

I don’t really know if the above are true but I have always followed this rule of hers when I cook.

So, let’s get right on…


500 grams of beef sukiyaki slices - cut into smaller pieces
5 potatoes – peeled, sliced and fried
2 large tomatoes – sliced into fours (I ran out of these so I substituted with one pack of cherry tomatoes)
2 large onions - finely sliced
2 stalks red chillies – finely sliced (use more if you like it hot and spicy)
6 garlics – finely sliced
2 cm ginger – finely sliced
1 stick of cinnamon (about 2 cm)
4 pcs cardamoms
4 pcs cloves
1 spoon – ground white pepper (or to taste)
1 cup sweet soya bean sauce (you can add more to your preference)
1-2 small bowls of water or beef stock (if you boil your beef)
salt to taste


1.  Heat up oil in pan and saute the cinnamon, cloves and cardamoms for half a minute.

2.  Add in the sliced chillies, onions, garlics and ginger.

3. Saute for about five minutes or until fragrant.

4.  Add in the beef slices.  If you are substituting with fried chicken pieces, do not add them in now.

5.  Stir fry the beef until half cooked.

6.  Add in pepper and stir.  Add in sweet soya bean sauce and water.  Add in salt to taste and bring to a boil.  Then simmer over medium fire for three to five minutes.

7.  Add in tomatoes and give a stir and simmer for another minute.  This would also be a good time to add in your fried chicken pieces.

8.  Add in the fried potatoes.

9.  Simmer for another two to three minutes.  Off the fire and serve.

I hope the husbands and children out there will love this dish as much as mine did.  Happy Kitchen-ing!!


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