May 2022

Braised Oxtails

Serves up to 6 people


For the Marinated Oxtails
1 cup Jerk Paste
1/2 cup GGP
1/4 cup Curry Powder
1/4 cup + 1 1/2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
5 pounds oxtails

For the Oxtail Braise
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil, plus more as needed
1 bunch green onions (about 6), ends trimmed, cut into thirds
20 garlic cloves
3 1-inch knobs ginger, peeled and cut in half
20 fresh thyme sprigs
10 whole allspice berries
2 fresh bay leaves
4 quarts Chicken Stock, plus more as needed
Jerk Paste to taste
Dark brown sugar, to taste
Curry powder, to taste
Kosher salt, to taste

For the Glazed Carrots and Squash
1 cup Chicken Stock
2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice, strained (or no-pulp store-bought)
1/2 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch dice
1/2 pounds chayote squash, cut into 3.4-inch dice
2 tablespoons GGP
10 fresh thyme sprigs
2 fresh bay leaves
1 teaspoon kosher salt

To Assemble
14 cup Chicken Stock
1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter, cubed
Freshly squeezed lemon juice, to taste
Kosher salt, to taste
2 tablespoons thinly sliced on the bias scallions
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives

For the Jerk Paste
makes 1 pint

1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon soy sauce
4 green onions, root ends trimmed, roughly chopped
2/3 cup Peppa Sauce 
1/4 cup Tamarind Glaze
1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh thyme springs, woody stems removed
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce  
1/4 cup GGP
1 3/4 teaspoons light brown sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon whole allspice berries 
Half of one 2-inch cinnamon stick (smashed with a knife to split) 
1 fresh bay leaf
5 whole cloves

For the Peppa Sauce
makes 1 quart

50 red Scotch bonnet peppers, stemmed and roughly chopped
2 cups Spice Pickling Liquid 
3/4 cup garlic cloves (2 to 3 heads)

For the Tamarind Glaze
makes 2 cups

2/3 cup seedless tamarind paste
1 3/4 cups palm sugar
1 garlic clove
1/2 teaspoon Peppa Sauce
1 1/2 cup + 4 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon honey
Kosher salt, to taste

For the Ginger-Garlic Purée (GGP)
makes 1 pint

2 large stems ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups garlic cloves
3/4 cup grapeseed oil

For the Curry Powder
makes 1 pint

1 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon whole coriander seeds
5 tablespoons whole cumin seeds
5 tablespoons anise seeds
1/4 cup whole allspice berries
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
1 tablespoon whole fenugreek seeds
3.4 cup + 1 1/2 teaspoons ground turmeric

For the Chicken Stock
makes 10 cups

3 pounds chicken bones
2 chicken legs (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1 pound chicken feet
1 pound yellow onions (about 2 large), quartered
1/2 pound carrots (about 2 large), peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
1/2 pound celery (about 6 stalks), trimmed and cut into 1-inch chunks
2 heads garlic, halved crosswise
10 fresh thyme sprigs
5 fresh parsley stems
10 whole black peppercorns


Combine the jerk paste, GGP, curry powder, and brown sugar in a large bowl. Add the oxtails and toss to coat well, then cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 24 hours and up to 48 hours.

To make the jerk paste, combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend on high until they form a smooth paste. 

To make the ginger-garlic purée (GGP), combine all the ingredients in a high-powered blender or food processor and process until smooth. 

To make the curry powder, heat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Spread all spices except turmeric on a sheet tray and toast for 5 minutes, until deeply toasted and fragrant. Immediately transfer to a bowl to keep the spices from burning and let cool slightly. Transfer toasted spices to a spice grinder or blender. Blitz into a fine powder and combine with the turmeric

To make the chicken stock, heat the over to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the chicken bones and legs on a sheet tray and roast for 40 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through cooking or until browned. In a large pot (at least 7 quarts), add the roasted chicken bones, legs, and feet, plus any roasting fat and juices, then all the remaining ingredients. Add water to cover, approximately 4 quarts, and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Lower the heat as necessary to keep the pot simmering gently, uncovered, for 6 hours. Strain the finished stock through a fine-mesh sieve.

To make the Tamarind Glaze, combine all the ingredients but honey and salt in a medium pot and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer gently, stirring often, for 15 minutes, until thick, glossy, and darkened in color. Reduce heat as needed to avoid spattering. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly. Transfer the mixture to a blender and purée until smooth. You may need to add a bit of water, up to 1/4 cup, to get the glaze to the right consistency---it should be almost like mayonnaise. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Finish the glaze by stirring in the honey, then season with salt to taste. 

To make the Peppa Sauce, combine all the ingredients in a food processor. Process until smooth, then transfer to a jar. Place a sheet of wax paper on top and then screw on the lid. (The paper prevents the vinegar from reacting with the lid.) Let sit in a cool, dark place for a day, then move the jar to the refrigerator.

When you're ready to cook, heat the oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large Dutch oven over high heat. When it shimmers, add the marinated oxtails, working in batches as necessary---you don't want to crowd the pan. Sear until deeply browned all over, about 4 minutes per side. Once all the oxtail is seared, add the green onions, garlic, ginger, thyme, allspice, and bay leaves. Pour in the chicken stock---it should just cover the oxtails (if not, ass a little more). 

Bring to a boil over high heat. When boiling, remove from the heat, place a sheet of parchment over the pot, then cover tightly with the pot's lid. Transfer to the oven and braise until the oxtails are tender and succulent, about 7 hours. 

Carefully remove the oxtails from the pot and set aside. Strain the braising liquid through a fine-mesh sieve, discard the aromatics, and return the liquid to the pot. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and cook until reduced to a quarter of its original volume---you should have about 2 cups. Taste the liquid and season with jerk paste, brown sugar, curry powder, and salt, but keep in mind that you'll reduce it even further, so don't overseason! 

While the braising liquid reduces, make the glaze and roast the vegetables. To make the glaze, combine the stock and orange juice in a small pot. Bring to a boil and reduce, stirring occasionally, until syrupy. You should have 1/4 cup glaze. To roast the carrots and chayote squash, heat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. On one side of a rimmed sheet pan, toss together the carrots with the oil, GGP, herbs, and salt; repeat with the chayote on the other half of the same sheet pan. Roast without stirring until just tender, about 8 minutes. Place the sheet pan on a cooling rack and reserve until ready to assemble. 

Return the oxtails to the pot and continue to reduce, stirring often by gently, until the liquid is thick and coats the oxtails, Cover to keep warm while you glaze the vegetables

In a large pan, combine the glazed carrots and squash, vegetable glaze, and 1/4 cup warm chicken stock. Bring to a brisk simmer over medium-high heat, and cook until syrupy, about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to low and add butter a cube at a time, stirring constantly, until sauce is emulsified. Season to taste with lemon juice and salt

To serve, place the oxtails in shallow bowls (or on a large platter to share), then top with the glazed vegetables. Garnish with scallions and chives. Serve immediately with rice and peas.

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