I got the idea for making ox tail stew from Elise's Simply Recipes site. I adore combing through her archives with a napkin in hand to catch the drool.
When we were at Costco last week, they had double-packs of ox tail. I used one package and froze the other.
This meal took two days to prepare. I didn't start the crockpot until noon, since we were out and about running errands. When the meat was still tough at dinner time, we ate leftovers and popped the entire stoneware insert into the refrigerator. The next morning, I scraped a layer of icky fat from the top of the dish, held my breath and cooked it all on low for another 10 hours.
so worth the wait.
so very worth the wait.
I just finished up the final leftovers for lunch yesterday and the flavors were even more pronounced. This is a great-tasting, hearty, flavorful stew.
--3 lbs oxtail
--2 chopped green onions
--1 cup frozen roasted corn
--5 baby potatoes, chopped in bite-sized chunks
--1 cup sliced celery
--1 cup baby carrots
--4 whole cloves of garlic
--1 large can of tomatoes and juice
--1/2 t Italian Seasoning
--1/2 t powdered ginger
--1/2 t cumin
--baby bottle of white wine (~1 cup)
--1 cup of beef broth
--a secret ingredient! 1 square of semi-sweet baking chocolate!
--rub a bit of olive oil into the bottom of your crockpot stoneware
--plop your ox tails in
--cover with the spices
--add tomatoes, vegetables and wine--drop in baking chocolate square
I ended up cooking this on high for 5 hours on the first day and then let it cool overnight. The next morning there was a thick layer of congealed fat on top. I wish I had taken a picture. It was really gross. I was scared.
I then cooked it on low for another 10 hours.
If you are not going to do this in two steps, I'd recommend cooking it on low for as long as you can. Probably 14-20 hours...
I really enjoyed this, and while the chocolate probably didn't add too awful much, it made me feel creative and adventurous to have it in there.
My children really liked this; we chopped all the meat off in their bowl. I preferred gnawing on the bones like a hungry animal.