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Braised Oxtails- 8/18/12

Here is another recipe from the French Laundry cookbook.  At the French Laundry the braised oxtail meat was pulled from the bones and served as the base of a dish called Surf and Turf.  Here I am just showing the recipe for the braised oxtails so you can just served it as a main dish.  This is a perfect dish on a cold winter day while eating hot braised oxtails will warm up your soul. It takes time and a little bit of effort but is well worth it but make sure so plan at least a few days ahead before making this dish.  The oxtails are so tender and the red wine gives this dish a wonderful flavor.

In the next recipe I will show you how to take this recipe and transform it into the next level with a Surf and Turf dish. 

Oxtails are great with white rice or mashed potatoes but I prefer white rice.

Oxtails are browned and therefore giving a really nice flavor and then they go into the oven for a long slow roast that makes them perfectly tender, juicy, and so delicious!

The sauce is also succulent!


Close look at the braised oxtails.


Preparation work..

For the oxtail

5 pounds oxtail pre-cut

flour for dredging

Salt and pepper

1 quart veal or beef stock

1 quart chicken stock

1/4 cup carrots

1/4 cup onions

1/4 cup leeks (white part only)


For the red wine marinate

one bottle red wine

1/2 cup carrots cut into 1 inch

2/3 cup leeks cut into 1 inch (white and pale green)

1/2 cup onions cut into 1 inch

3 garlic gloves, smashed

10 sprigs thyme

 1 bay leaf


Put the vegetables in a large pot and pour the red wine in.

Bring the pot to a boil

Tilt the pan away from the burner and carefully ignite the wine with a match.  Allow the alcohol to burn off (you cannot see the flame in this picture).  Turn off the heat

Cool the marinade.

Make sure the marinate is cool down and at room temperature before you pour it over the meat...

Cover the pot and put in the refrigerator for 8 to 24 hours.

The next day transfer the meat to one container and the vegetable to another pot.

Pour the liquid through a paper towel to remove some of the blood and other impurities.  Do not wring out the towel, the impurities would be forced back into the liquid.

Slowly heat the marinate to a simmer. Skim and discard the impurities and other particles as they rise to the surface.  Remove from heat.

Place the flour into a dish or plate.  Pat the oxtails dry and dredge them in the flour just to coat.  Lightly season with salt and pepper.

Heat 1/4 inch of oil in a large deep pot over medium heat.  Add the oxtail and sear them on one side until they reach a rich deep brown color.

Put all the browned oxtail in a large pot and set aside.

Put the marinated vegetables the same pot that you browned the oxtail.  Sautéed the vegetables for 3 to 4 minutes.

Pour in the veal or beef stock, chicken stock...

and pour in the marinate mixture.  Bring it to a boil.

Pour the broth over the browned oxtails.

Bring the pot to a boiling point and turn off the heat.

Put a piece of parchment on top so that the meat does not dry out.

Put the pot in the oven at 325 degrees for about 3 to 3/12 hours.

Remove the pot from the oven.  Throw away the parchment paper.  Put the meat aside.

Strain the sauce and throw away the vegetables.

Bring the sauce to a simmer and let it reduce it down to a desire consistency. 

Add salt and pepper according to taste.

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