Main Meals

Triple-cooked oxtail

35 minutes
4 hours

“Even though oxtail takes some time to cook, the trick with this dish is to complete the first two cooking methods a day or two in advance. Come the big feasting day, all you need to do is char the oxtail over hot coals.”- Clement Pedro

Wine/Spirit Pairing
Woolworths Neil Ellis Cabernet Merlot

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  • 2 kg oxtail
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 4 T canola oil
  • 8 bay leaves
  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 onions, quartered
  • 3 T peppercorns
  • ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
  • For the spicy carrot pickle:
  • 2 cups white spirit vinegar
  • 150 g sugar
  • 2 T mild curry powder
  • 1 x 5 cm piece ginger, grated
  • 4 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 red onion, cut into thin petals
  • 4 bay leaves

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Pat dry the oxtail with kitchen paper, then season.

2. Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat and brown the oxtail in batches.

3. Place the bay leaves, carrots, onions, peppercorns and Worcestershire sauce in a large roasting pan. Add the oxtail and enough water to cover it. Cover with foil and bake for 4 hours, or until the meat on the larger pieces has started to pull from the bone.

4. Remove the oxtail from the pan and strain off the pan juices, discarding the carrots, onions, peppercorns and bay leaves.

5. Place the pan juices in a saucepan and reduce over a medium heat until it resembles a thin gravy.

6. Prepare a braai with hot coals. Place the oxtail on the braai and char, turning often. Once it has formed a crust, baste with the reduced stock.

7. Serve on a large platter with the carrot pickle.

8. To make the carrot pickle, heat the vinegar, sugar, curry powder and ginger in a saucepan over a medium heat. Simmer for 5 minutes. While the vinegar is simmering, add the carrots, onion and bay leaves and infuse for 15 minutes, or overnight.

HAVE LEFTOVERS? Make Birria oxtail tacos. Find the recipe here.

Find more Christmas recipes here. 

Photographs: Jan Ras
Production: Abigail Donnelly and Clement Pedro
Food assistant: Ellah Maepa

Clement Pedro

Recipe by: Clement Pedro

Clement Pedro strikes a balance between rib-sticking fare you can really get stuck into and experimental recipes that take accessible ingredients to next-level status. Clem can do pretty much anything – and so can you with his recipes.

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