African-Style Oxtail Stew

Recipe By: Gail   Photo By: Nathan
Oxtail is my favorite meal and I serve this recipe to all my friends and use it for my frozen food business. Everyone loves it. I call it God's food as it is so delicious! This meal is very rich, but oh so good! Oxtail is easily available here in Africa but I have heard it can be obtained in the US.
  • Prep: 20 Minutes
  • |
  • Cook: 3 hours 15 Minutes
  • |
  • Total: 3 hours 35 Minutes
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 2 cubes beef bouillon
  • 10 cups water
  • 6 whole black peppercorns
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 3 pounds beef oxtail, cut into pieces
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 (12 ounce) can kidney beans, drained
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch dissolved in
  • 1/2 cup water
  1. Place celery, garlic, tomato paste, bouillon cubes, and water into a large Dutch oven; stir until the tomato paste has dissolved. Add peppercorns and bay leaves, place over medium heat and bring to a simmer.
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oxtail and cook until browned on all sides, about 10 minutes. Remove oxtail from hot oil and place into Dutch oven. Pour out all but 1 tablespoon of oil from the skillet, reduce heat to medium, and cook the onion until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes; add to oxtail.
  3. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 2 1/2 hours. Season with salt and pepper, recover, and continue to cook until the oxtail is tender, but not falling off of the bone, about 30 minutes.
  4. Remove oxtail pieces and place into a serving dish. Add kidney beans to Dutch oven and return to a simmer. Thicken with cornstarch dissolved in water, simmer for 1 minute until thickened and clear. Pour sauce over the oxtail.
Oxtail should be ready when a knife slices easily through the meat. It should not be overcooked otherwise it will fall off the bones and go stringy - and if not cooked long enough it will not come off the bones easily enough. I normally find 3 hours cooking just perfect.
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Reviewed By: Callista
I must admit that I adjusted the recipe quite a bit. Instead of bouillon, I used homemade broth. I made this a one pot wonder by sauteing the oxtails for about 8 minutes in a large stock pot. (mine seems to take the challenge well). Then I added carrots and celery (cause I love veggies) cooked them for a minute or two and then threw in 3 tsp garlic ( it mellows in cooking and I love the flavor). I left out the beans and cornstarch and extra water because with the added veggies, it didn't need thickening. I cooked the whole thing for 2.5 hrs and then served it over rice. My boyfriend, who had initially said "ew, tails" said this one is a keeper. I forgot how flavorful beef tails are. One would think 5 bucks a pound is a lot for them, but they are packed with flavor.
Reviewed By: Sunet
Very good! I only made a third of the recipe, used dried kidney beans that I had soaked, and added some carrots and a potato. Omitted the cornstarch and added some okra to attempt to thicken it. Made it in the slowcooker after browning the oxtail first. Turned out really delicious
Reviewed By: firstladyMW
My family and I loved this version of oxtails! The broth was so flavorful that I added some of it to my rice and beans which turned out great. The only changes I made was to add some whole allspice, dried thyme (couldn't find the bay leaves) and sliced carrots to the cooking liquid. I omitted the cornstarch and made rice and beans to serve with the meat since my hubby doesn't really like stews/soups. Since we usually eat oxtals jaimaican style this was a nice switch. Thanks!