It’s not difficult to prepare, but it is time-consuming, in that it needs to simmer on the stove for a minimum of two hours so the meat will be tender and fall off the bone. As you can imagine, there really isn’t a lot of meat on an oxtail, but what meat there is needs to cook thoroughly so it’s really tender.
Here’s your list of ingredients:
The usual Holy Trinity of:
Diced carrots, onions and celery (I was out of celery….oh, well. I made do without.)
Minced garlic clove
15 oz. can of tomatoes (preferably imported from Italy)
Salt and pepper
You see... there really aren't a lot of ingredients. The trick is layering the flavors; letting each one simmer its way into the oxtail meat and making its presence known before adding the next layer. Let's get started!
Push the veggies aside, and nestle your pieces of oxtail into the pan. The heat should still be on medium high. Drizzle in some more olive oil if you need to. Season the meat with salt and pepper as well. It's important to season each element. You won't have to make much adjustment to the seasonings in the end this way.
When one side is brown, go ahead and turn them over to do the same to the other side.
Pour yourself a nice glass of red wine, and add another cup of the red wine to the braising pot. The heat should still be fairly high so the wine comes to a boil quickly. Lower the temp a bit and let it simmer until at least half of it is gone. You see how the color of the broth is really becoming quite rich looking at the end of the wine portion, just before I add the beef broth in the third photo above.
Now comes the next layer of flavor; beef broth. Add at least a cup of that and once again, let it simmer away until it’s been reduced by at least half.
PS: Serve with some crusty bread; you’ll want to mop up every last bit of sauce.
PPS: I served this with a hearty red Umbrian Sagrantino; simply the best.