Sunday, 30 March 2014

Beef and Oxtail Stew

I've been making a lot of beef stews recently and I've got to say this is the best one yet. It is just the easiest and most comforting Sunday dish that can be cooking away while you relax.

As with all beef stews and casseroles, the main ingredient is time - the slower you cook it, the yummier it will be! I always try to give it at least three hours at 150C. This recipe is also perfect for the slow cooker. Follow all the steps and just transfer all the ingredients to the slow cooker and cook on low for 7 hours. You could choose to add your potatoes to the stew to have a one pot wonder, or have a creamy mash instead. I served this stew with kale, which was lovely - or you can't go wrong with some Savoy cabbage.

I can guarantee you won't be disappointed with this recipe...

500g braising steak
3 oxtail joints
200g pancetta cubes
2 onions, chopped roughly
2 sticks of celery, chopped
4 carrots, sliced
3 gloves of garlic
Sprig of thyme
2 tablespoons of plain flour
tablespoon of worcestershire sauce
300ml red wine
2 litres of beef stock
Salt and pepper

In you casserole dish (make sure you can use it on the hob as well as in the oven) add some olive oil and fry the steak off in small batches until the meat is nice and brown, remove from dish and set aside whilst you fry off the rest of the meat.
Add a little more oil to the dish and fry the pancetta with the oxtails. Once the fat has rendered down add the onion, cook for a couple of mins then add the rest of the veg and garlic. Return the steak to the dish and add the flour. Give it a good stir (it will look nasty and sticky at this stage) and then add the red wine. After a couple of minutes add the stock, worcestershire sauce and seasoning. Place in a 150C oven for at least 3 hours. Once the stew is cooked take the oxtails out and remove the meat from the bone and add back into the casserole.

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