Sep 082012

Between visiting friends and procrastinating packing for Tanzania, I’ve been experimenting in the kitchen in my new role as “house chef.”  Since staying with my mom, she’s called me from work asking “what’s for dinner?” =)  My mom got some oxtail from Costco the other day, so we ate one batch Chinese style in oxtail soup and I saved the other batch to try my hand at oxtail marmalade.  Marmalade?!?! Yes, while my husband prefers to call it “meat jelly,” it’s not as unappetizing as it sounds.  It is in fact DELICIOUS!  I first had it in New York at the now-closed restaurant Allen and Delancey in LES.  The dish was bone marrow with oxtail marmalade and those who know me, know I love love bone marrow.  Oxtail marmalade is also a well-known dish at another NY restaurant, Blue Ribbon Bakery.  I adapted the recipe from Serious Eats, which took the recipe from Blue Ribbon Bakery.  The main difference was that I used a pressure cooker to speed up the cooking time, though it still took so long that I managed to miss my yoga class (or I was making an excuse to be lazy and not go to yoga).

The Serious Eats recipe must make a ginormous portion because I halved the recipe and it was still a lot.  If you’re spreading it over a French baguette, you really don’t need more than this unless you’re serving a massive party.

  • 2 pounds oxtail
  • 3 cups red wine (I used Trader Joe’s wine, the $4.99 version of two buck chuck)
  • 1/2 head of garlic, halved crosswise
  • 4-5 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1/2 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups carrots, peeled and cut into small bite-sized cubes
  • 1/2 pound shallots, peeled and finely diced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 tsp granulated sugar
  • 8 tsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • Toasted rounds of French baguette for serving with the oxtail marmalade

1. Place the oxtail, 2 cups of the red wine, garlic, thyme, and peppercorns in a large pressure cooker (I used an 8 quart but 6 quart is fine) . Add water to cover by 1/2 inch. Cover with pressure cooker lid and cook on high pressure for 30 minutes.

2. Transfer the oxtail to a bowl; remove the meat from the bones and tear it roughly into small cubes, about 1/2-inch. This part was tricky since I was impatient and didn’t let the meat cool enough.  Some of the parts are hard to get at because of the bone but be patient, you can’t waste the meat!

3. Strain the oxtail stock into a large skillet, throw away the solids. Bring the liquid to a boil over high heat; reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the mixture is reduced to 1 1/2 cups, this only took me 10 minutes since I didn’t have much liquid.

4. While the stock reduces, combine 1 1/2 tablespoons of the butter with the flour until it forms a paste. I put the butter in the microwave for a few seconds to soften it before combining with the flour, but you don’t want to melt it all the way.  Over medium heat, whisk the paste, 1 tablespoon at a time, into the reduced liquid. Cook until the mixture thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

5. In a separate large skillet, melt the remaining tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add the carrots, shallots and cook until slightly softened, about 15 minutes. Stir in the sugars, the remaining red wine, the vinegar. Cook over medium-high heat stirring frequently until the liquid has completely evaporated, about 45 minutes.

6. Stir in the oxtail meat and thickened oxtail stock. Add salt and pepper to taste–very important to keep tasting to make sure the flavors are right.  I let this cool a little bit and ate it right away!  Couldn’t refrigerate overnight like the original recipe tells you to, it’s best fresh!
Slice the French baguette and toast with a little bit of olive oil and serve.  Voila!
oxtail marmalade

It doesn’t look like a big batch, but you don’t eat much at a time since it’s so rich

oxtail marmalade baguettes

Savory, sweet, and heavenly!

 September 8, 2012  Posted by at 4:18 pm Food Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  Add comments

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