This is another perfect Autumnal recipe from our friends at Le Creuset, just what you need on one of those slightly chillier nights- a hearty stew! To make this delicious dinner you will need a Le Creuset casserole dish, check out our selection here. You will also need a steamer!
An age-old cut of meat that is significantly under-used, oxtail, when slowly cooked in a rich sauce is beautifully tender and the meat simply flakes off the bone. Not only is the recipe inexpensive to cook, as offal is typically cheaper than better known cuts, its portions are generous with the addition of seasonal squash which also brings a lovely sweetness to the dish. It is best served with Speckled Green Herb and Butter Dumplings.
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 3 hours
Serves: 4 people, or 2 very hungry ones!
1kg oxtail portions, approximately 1-2 oxtails per person depending on size
1 tablespoon plain flour
Sea salt and cracked black pepper
1-2 tablespoons oil, for frying
1 large onion, roughly chopped
1 large garlic clove, finely chopped
1 large carrot, diced
1 celery stick, diced
1 tablespoon dried mixed herbs
2 bay leaves
½ tablespoon mild curry powder
400g winter squash e.g. butternut, diced
200ml good quality red wine
1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato chutney
500ml beef stock
For the Dumplings
350g self-raising flour
150g salted butter
1 tablespoon mixed herbs, fresh or dried
Preheat the oven to 180⁰C/ Fan 160⁰C/ Gas Mark 4
- Remove the oxtail from the packaging and pat dry with kitchen roll. Combine the flour and a little seasoning on a plate before coating each oxtail. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in the 3-ply Stainless Steel Deep Casserole over a medium heat and then, in batches, brown the oxtail on all sides then set aside for later.
- Heat a little more oil in the pan before adding the onion. Sauté for 5-6 minutes until soft then add the garlic, carrot and celery. Fry for a further 3-4 minutes before sprinkling in the mixed herbs and bay leaves.
- Add the curry powder and stir well to coat all the ingredients in the spice. Return the oxtail to the pan along with the diced squash, stirring all the ingredients together.
- Pour in the red wine and allow to simmer for 2 minutes to cook off the alcohol. Add the chopped tomatoes and tomato chutney. Finally, add the stock and bring to the boil. Put on the lid and place in the oven to braise for 2½ hours. Stir the ingredients every 30 minutes ideally, although the stew can be left.
- In the meantime, make the dumplings. Using your fingertips, rub the flour and butter together to form a sand-like texture. Add the herbs and seasoning. Gradually add 100ml water (not all at once as you may not require it all) and bring the mixture together with a fork. Once combined, gently bring the mixture together with your hands, kneading for only a few seconds. Divide into 12 balls, cover with a little clingfilm and set aside until needed.
- After 2½ hours, remove the lid and stir the ingredients. Cook for another 30 minutes, without the lid, allowing the sauce to reduce. Spoon off any oil residue on the surface and discard.
- Place the pan on the hob and bring up to a gentle simmer. Either submerge the dumplings into the stew or place a Le Creuset Large Multi-Steamer on top of the casserole. Put a small circle of greased parchment paper in the steamer and gently add the dumplings. Put on the lid and either steam (or boil the dumplings in the stew) over a low heat for 20 minutes or until the dumplings have plumped up and cooked through.
- Serve either on the bone or carefully pull the meat off the bone and stir through the sauce. Serve with green beans and potatoes of your choice.
- When the meat is shredded from the bone and stirred back through the sauce it makes a great ragú to serve stirred through pasta.