A quite simple-to-make, yet tasty and vaguely exotic dish. Pretty free-form though, and hard to screw up, so experiment when making it!

  1. sautée the onion, carrots, and garlic with a little butter over low heat, until they get a little soft. Feel free to add salt, pepper, thyme, or whatever spice you think enhances the flavor. Don't cook this stuff thoroughly, because it is going to stew for three hours...
  2. in a large stew pot, brown ox tails, in the butter or oil of some sort on medium high.5
  3. Add the carrot/onion/garlic mixture, and fill the stew pot with wine, beef stock, and water, so that the ox tails are covered, add dry vegetable soup, cover, and simmer on low for three hours.6
  4. Thicken juice with thickening, made with corn starch and water.
  5. Serve over rice.

Next time I make this I plan on "kicking it up a notch", and adding some cayenne pepper, and whatever other spicy thing that strikes my fancy - more as the situation develops.

1Or 8 small carrots, 2 onions, and 5 cloves of garlic... actually, put in however many carrots and whatnot you want - they're all good! Although I do recommend big, as bigger carrots make larger chunks in the stew, which is nice, since they tend to get dissolved somewhat.
2Or margerine or shortening, or whatever you feel will cause your ox tails to brown the best
3Wine and stock are not really necessary - they make the stew richer, but if they're left out, it's still tastes great. If you do put in the wine and/or stock, you might not want to add both packets of soup, since that could make things too salty.
4Or potato starch, or flour, whatever your favorite thickening agent is. And it could be more or less than four tablespoons.. the idea is to make the stew as thick as you'd like it to be when you eat it.
5Feel free to add your favorite spice, at this point. (salt, pepper, MSG, whatever.) I personally do not add any spice, because I like the taste of the ox tail by itself, but if you are a salt maniac, you probably want to add something here...
6Three hours is probably a good estimate for the minimum time to cook the stew. If you have a pressure cooker, or some other exotic way of stewing, you can use that, with excellent results, I am sure. And you don't have to cover it if you don't want to.

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