Approx weight: 450 grams (1 lb)
What is Oxtail?
Oxtail, in the culinary world, is the word for the tail of an ox. It’s high in gelatine, which makes it an incredibly flavoursome way to enjoy beef. A whole oxtail usually weights a whopping 7-8lbs, but it’s cut into sizes more appropriate for use in meals. It makes for delicious soups, stews and gravy.
The only way to cook oxtail is slowly, so the meat falls away from the bone. This allows the fat to melt and create an amazingly rich flavour, as well as giving the muscle that would otherwise be tough, plenty of time to become tender and mouth-wateringly delicious.
Oxtail is the tail of cow, making it a delicious way to enjoy beef. You get all the rich flavour but at a lower price tag than other cuts (although it’s definitely worth splashing out on one of our unbeatable steaks every now and again). Oxtail is an economical way to provide delicious food to a large family (or to a small family, for that matter!).
All beef, including oxtail, comes from Yorkshire farmers local to us in Sheffield. We’ve had over 8 generations to build lasting relationships with local farmers, meaning that we can source the very best beef without fail. We only use heritage breeds of cattle, from Dexter to Highland, to get the very highest quality of meat every time.
Oxtail Soup Recipe
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1.25kg/2lb oxtail
- 1 roughly chopped onion, celery stalk and carrot
- A bay leaf
- 3 thyme sprigs
- 2 tsp tomato purée
- 300ml red wine
- 1.5 litres of beef stock
- 1 tbsp plain flour
- In a large casserole dish on the hob, heat oil on a high heat. Fry the oxtail pieces until browned all over as this will lock in the taste. Depending on the size of your dish, you might need to do this in batches! Simply remove the oxtail when done and put on a plate while you fry the rest. At the end, you’ll have all the oxtail browned and on a plate to the side.
- Add all the vegetables to the casserole dish and cook for 4-5mins, stirring periodically to prevent burning. Add herbs and tomato purée, as well as salt and pepper and cook for another minute. Pour in the wine and allow this to bubble, still on high, for a few more minutes.
- Return the oxtail into the casserole dish with the other ingredients and add in the beef stock.
- Bring to the boil before turning the heat down so the soup is simmering. Cover and cook for 2.5-3 hours on a low heat, until the oxtail meat is falling away from the bone.
- Using a slotted spoon, remove the oxtail pieces and leave to cool on a plate.
- Strain the soup through a sieve into a large bowl and leave to cool. Once cooled, cover and leave in the fridge overnight. This allows the flavours to develop.
- Shred the oxtail meat, discarding the bones and place in a separate bowl, covered, in the fridge overnight.
- The following day, scrape away the layer of fat that will have formed on the top of the soup liquid. You could save this for use in other cooking recipes (it would make an excellent fat with which to roast potatoes!) or simply throw into the bin.
- Spoon the remaining soup (it will be slightly jellified!) into a pan and heat until it’s simmering.
- In a bowl, blend the flour with three tablespoons of the hot soup until it forms a smooth paste. Whisk this into the soup and simmer for another two minutes.
- Add the oxtail meat to the pan and allow to heat through for another minute or two.
- Serve and enjoy.
Oxtail is a fantastic way to enjoy the rich flavours of beef!