Rich and meaty oxtail—that’s the tail of a cow—is a supergelatinous cut of meat, perfect for braising or stewing, or even as a soup base. Though it requires a long cooking time, the flavor is definitely worth it. Here are five excellent ways to cook oxtail:
1. Autumn Oxtail Stew
Chef Dave Beran adds warms spices—cinnamon, peppercorns and juniper—to punch up his hearty stew. He also adds pears and apples, which give the stew a lovely fruitiness and makes it especially good with Oregon Pinot Noir.
2. Oxtail Soup with Daikon and Ramen Noodles
Oxtail is a popular ingredient in Hawaiian cooking. Roy Choi makes it the base for the broth of his hearty soup and adds plenty of the tender braised meat as well. The soup is also packed with ramen noodles, daikon and leeks, and then garnished with crisp, sweet fried garlic chips.
3. Slow-Roasted Oxtail Stew with Pancetta
Chef Marsha McBride's favorite type of meat is oxtails. She makes her hearty stew with unsweetened chocolate and dried fruit, which add depth even though their flavors are barely perceptible; she serves the stew on pappardelle.
4. Spiced Beef Pho with Sesame-Chile Oil
The rice vermicelli soup, pho, is a staple all over Vietnam, and this spicy beef version is the specialty of Hanoi. It gets a ton of flavor from stock made with oxtails.
5. Star Anise–Beef Soup
This ultra-satisfying noodle soup is packed with oxtail, beef shank meat and sirloin.