- Tried & Tasted -

Friday, 17 April 2015

Hearty Oxtail Stew

There is something comforting when I eat a warm, hearty bowl of stew. Stews are very nourishing, satisfying and provide a balanced meal in a bowl. 

This is a one pot meal that is easy to put together and washing up after is kept to the minimum. It is a dish that uses minimal effort but gives you the most amazing flavors. Did I mention that the dish feeds a crowd too?

Focaccia bread with the stew

The stew can be eaten with rustic bread, like the focaccia, ciabatta, or baguette, to soak up the gravy or ladled over cooked pasta. It doesn't taste too bad paired with a glass of red wine;)

I would usually cook 2 portions of the stew and freeze one portion to have later. The stew actually tastes better the next day, the flavour improves as it sits.

The garnish is something I would strongly encouraged you to add before serving. The addition of lemon zest and parsley combination before serving was a trick I picked up from my step dad. He used to run a restaurant and would serve his osso bucco topped with lemon zest and parsley. The lemon zest gave the whole dish a very refreshing dimension. A contrast, a good one, to the rich, meaty stew. I love the flavour!

Hearty Ox Tail Stew
(serve 6 people)
1 kg of oxtail or beef short ribs
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can of peeled tomatoes or diced tomatoes (not tomato paste or puree)
1 carrot, cut into 2cm pieces
3 stalks of celery
10 medium size, button mushroom
4 medium size potatoes, washed with skin on, cut into half
Beef stock, 1 liter
2 tsp salt or to taste
1/2 tsp pepper or to taste
3 tablespoon of olive oil 
Garnish (optional - strongly encouraged):
Parsley and lemon zest, finely minced

  • You may use any kind of mushrooms such as oyster, fresh shiitake, chanterelle or morel.
  • You may add other different vegetables, such as frozen peas (add to the stew at the last 10 min of simmering before service), capsicum (any color will do), butternut squash, sweet potatoes, pumpkin and/or parsnip.

Steps to cook:
  • In a large heavy pot, at medium high heat, add 2 tablespoon of olive oil. Pat dry the oxtail/short ribs with kitchen towel and add to the pot to sear. Work in batches as the beef will start to boil rather than sear when the pan is overcrowded with too many pieces. Remove the oxtail/short ribs pieces and set it aside in a clean bowl.
  • Using the same pot, add another tablespoon of olive oil. On medium heat, fry the onion until it is translucent, add carrots, celery and garlic. Fry till fragrant, then add mushroom, follow by tomatoes and stir till combine.
  • Add salt and pepper. 
  • Add the oxtail/short ribs back into the pot and pour in the beef stock till it just cover the ingredients. Bring the content to a boil before turning down the heat to let stew simmer. Taste and add more salt, if needed, 30 min into cooking.
  • Cover the pot and let the content simmer for about 1 - 1 1/2 hour on low heat, until the meat is fork tender. 
  • Skim excess oil on the surface of the stew before placing in the potatoes.
  • Put in the potatoes and cook till tender, about 30 min.
  • Ladle the stew into serving bowls and top it with the garnish.
  • Yum time...

Cook stew, share it and enjoy the company.

To be in the loop, click 'like' on Facebook:


  1. Absolutely delicious looking dish, very colorful!

  2. Thanks, Yelena. You cook and bake very well. Your pictures are so beautiful and loved the idea of having the space to plant my own fruit trees one day.