Well now that I have started blogging again, I decided to continue with my last real post. Yes, it was the dinner party that I had. You may ask why since I've already posted about it. Well, truth is, I was really proud of that meal. I tried a recipe that I've never attempted before (oxtail ragu) and it was very successful. So I wanted to show you, my readers, how to make it too. It's a fairly easy dish but just time consuming. But don't fret, it is well worth it.
The first part of the recipe begins with the luxurious sauce. I get my oxtail from a butcher but I have seen it in supermarkets too. I season the oxtail liberally with salt and pepper.
Recipe below courtesy of Lidia's Italy Braised Oxtail with Rigatoni
Oxtail Ragu with Rigatoni
Makes 8-10 servings
2 1/2 pounds oxtails, about 1 inch thick
6 tbsp olive oil
2 medium yellow onions, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
4 celery stalks, chopped
1/2 bunch fresh Italian parsley, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced chopped
2 cups dry white wine
1 35-ounce can crushed San Marzano tomatoes
4 cups chicken stock
1. Season both sides of the oxtail pieces with salt and pepper. Heat the olive oil in a wide and tall, heavy pan. Add oxtail pieces, cook, turning as necessary, until golden brown on all sides, about 10 minutes. If necessary, remove the pieces as they brown to make room in the pan for remaining pieces.
2. Remove all the oxtail pieces from the pan. Stir in the onion, carrot, celery, parsley and garlic. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until the vegetables are wilted, about 4 minutes.
3. Pour in the wine, bring to a vigorous boil and cook until the wine is evaporated, about 10 minutes.
4. Pour in the crushed tomatoes. Bring to a boil, lower the heat so the sauce is at a lively simmer and season lightly with salt and pepper.
5. Tuck the oxtail into the sauce and cook until very tender. The meat should be practically falling off the bone and the vegetables disintegrated into the sauce, about 3 hours. As the oxtails cook, add the chicken stock, about 1/2 cup at a time to keep the level of the liquid more or less steady during cooking.
6. Once the sauce is done, cool the oxtails in the cooking liquid to room temperature. Skim the excess fat from the sauce.
7. Remove oxtail from sauce, then remove all meat from the bones. Shred it coarsely and return it to the sauce. Keep warm over low heat.
8. Cook pasta as directed, but leaving it slightly underdone. Drain and add to warmed sauce. Stir gently and serve immediately. Add fresh grated cheese if you desire.
Note: The pasta sauce can be prepared and refrigerated up to 3 days in advance.