Sunday, November 14, 2010

What's for supper?

The nights draw in and the weather is damp and raw. Wild winds have blown the last leaves off the trees and the landscape is curiously light and spacious. I'm sure the novelty will soon wear off. We come in from the garden rubbing our hands to restore the circulation, sniffling in the welcoming warmth of the kitchen. Comfort food is called for - a warm nourishing rib-sticking stew is on the menu tonight.

The Glam Ass was dispatched to find the main ingredient - not an easy task as most people locally must have had the same idea -  and with only one per animal supply was outstripping demand. No, no, no. Not a bull's pizzle - an oxtail.

Here the hunter (with the help of his own assistant, Chester) shows off his prize, which he tracked down in the chiller of Welshpool butcher's 'Rikki Lloyd'. He came out of the shop carrying something which could have been mistaken for a gift-wrapped shalalee.

What a curious thing it is when seen like this and not swinging at the rear end of a cow or packed neatly in a plastic tray - or even arranged artfully with potatoes and greens.

That's more like it - dusted with flour and ready to be cooked very gently with some flavoursome stock, vegetables, herbs and a glug of wine. Plenty of time to time to sit by the fire and read the newspaper while it cooks and the light falls outside. Hours in fact.
Something like 3 hours later it's ready to be scoffed - by which time of course we were so hungry that all thoughts of photographing the artfully arranged end result was forgotten. Readers, we ate it.

13 comments:

Julia Dunnit said...

I'd have ate it too!

rachel said...

Mmmm, I can almost smell that stew. I loved oxtail when I was a child - but the other end - tongue - was a real nightmare for me.

Pondside said...

Can you believe that I've never cooked, indeed, have never seen an ox tail except on an ox. The Great Dane is in for a treat if you will please email me a recipe. Please.

Wipso said...

Like Pondside I have never cooked one but oxtail soup was def one of my favourites as a child :-)
A x

Diary Farmer said...

Have just had one of our heifers back from the abattoir at Bishop's Castle this last week. One of our customers for our beef requested an oxtail for which they had already diced and more importantly didn't charge for it

Pam said...

Sounds lovely, looks menacing, like something your mum might whip you with if you were late for tea, LOL

Frances said...

Mountaineer, not for the first time, I echo Pondside's comment.

Of course, I know about oxtail soup, and think that I have even tasted it. Yet, never, never, have I ever seen the main ingredient.

Please do post a recipe for your delicious supper dish. I will then have to discover if my local market's butcher can find an oxtail...given enough advance notice.

xo

Chris Stovell said...

Oh gosh, I prefer seeing it in several pieces rather than one... reminds me too much of where it came from. still, I agree, it does make a perfect stew.

Catching up and talking of one piece - hope the Glam Ass is restored now too!

Twiglet said...

Oh yes! A delicious aroma wafting across the valley!! I have been making scrummy caseroles using the game packs from Tuffins - perfect with a giant Yorkshire Pudding!

Friko said...

An oxtail stew, now there's an idea for a freezer cook.
Or even just a soup. The thought of the smell alone makes me feel hungry.

Nice to hear from you mountainear, how's life?

her at home said...

Ah yes great Breton favourite ox tail I love seeing it in the shops after it was so difficult to get in our local butcher in the UK!

muddyboots said...

ooh, just love oxtail soup real comfort food

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

Stewed , ox tail ... or shin of beef , bone and all ... are heavenly winter food .
If we get another winter like the last one , as they forecast , these cuts of meat might stage a revival even among the Minute Steak fans .( I've never been sure , is it Minute as in 60 seconds or Minute as in barely visible to the naked eye ? )