Oxtail Stew

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On a recent trip to the Korean market, I couldn't resist the pretty oxtails at the meat counter. On a cold day, there's nothing more comforting than the house smelling of meat braising in wine. And it's been chilly, so braising was in order.

This was a no fuss recipe that pretty much cooked itself after the initial chopping and meat browning. The most difficult part was straining the sauce, but that's only because of my weak wrists. The husband was suspicious of the straining, but quickly won over. You get a silky, smooth sauce with no mushy veggies. I served the oxtails and the sauce over egg noodles with red wine. It was delicious.
Oxtail Stew
(I read a lot of recipes, and then decided to do my own thing)

2.5 lbs of oxtails
2 carrots, chopped
3 celery sticks, chopped
1 onion chopped
4 garlic cloves
handful of pear onions
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 cups of red wine
2 cups of chicken stock
olive oil
salt and pepper

orange peel from one orange
3 sprigs of thyme
1 sprig of rosemary
1 bay leaf
2 cloves

1) Salt and pepper oxtails and drench in flour that has been sprinkled with some paprika. Heat olive oil in a large dutch oven and brown the meat on all sides. Set meat aside.
2) Add more oil to pan, along with onions and garlic, saute and scrape the brown bits. After a few minutes, all the remaining veggies, more oil and cook for 5 or so minutes. Then, mix in tomato paste. Season with salt and pepper.
3) Return meat to pan, along with your bouquet or aromatics. Add wine, stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 2 or more hours until the meat is tender. Check every 30 or so minutes and rotate the meat.
4) Remove oxtails, and strain the sauce, discarding the vegetables and bouquet  (I kept the little pearl onions). Return sauce to the pan to thicken and season. You want a nice consistency, that's not too thin or thick. During the last 5 minutes, add the meat back in.

Serve over egg noodles, mashed potatoes or rice.

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