The joy of oxtail

Last weekend I cooked an oxtail stew that’s keeping me going through the week. I’ve had 5 servings from it so far, but now there’s no meat left, just a damn good stock which should make a good soup tomorrow if I throw in plenty of pasta.

I used a Daube recipe from Hugh F-W’s meat book. Hugh specifies shin or skirt of beef, but the nearest thing I could find in Waitrose was oxtail. As well as the ~1kg of this, there is 150g of pork belly, to add even more unctuousness. I’m not sure it’s needed. Left to get cold, the stew solidifies into a firm jelly, with only a few mm of fat on top. I’m tempted to buy some more oxtail just to make stock – the result has to be better than the overly runny pseudo stock (ground bones and mince) you can buy. It might even be cheaper.

2 thoughts on “The joy of oxtail”

  1. Yes, I discovered the joys of oxtail shortly after the christmas holiday when I was broke. It makes a very tastey stew/soup/stock – probably all three from the same piece. The only downside is that it is difficult to find organic (I prefer my meat to have been grown without routine antibiotics) oxtail anywhere. As it doesn’t seem to appear in the supermarkets, I wonder where it goes – seems such a waste.

  2. I buy organic if I see it, but am not too worried.

    As to where it goes – I expect pet food accounts for a lot of it, and maybe some goes abroad. I think similar fates await other cuts that seem to have disappeared, to be replaced by non-specific “stewing”, “braising”, “roasting” and “frying” meat. I’ll decide how to cook my meat, if you don’t mind.


Leave a comment