This is a beautifully rich soup that isn’t just a meal but also an impressive soup to serve to guests. It takes some time to cook, but not much time to prepare. In the end it’s worth it.
- 1.5 kg oxtail
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- olive oil
- 2 medium leeks
- 2 stalks of celery
- 4 medium carrots
- 1 onion
- peeled poatoes (optional)
- a few sprigs of fresh thyme
- a few sprigs of fresh rosemary
- 2 heaped tablespoons plain flour
- 2 x 400 g tins of plum tomatoes
- 300ml red wine
- 1 litre beef stock
- Worcestershire sauce
Preheat the oven to 220ºC. Place a large roasting tray in the oven to preheat. Carefully remove the hot tray from the oven, then add the oxtail. Season and drizzle over some olive oil, add salt and pepper then toss to coat and place in the hot oven for around 20 minutes, or until golden and caramelized.
Meanwhile, trim and halve the leeks and celery lengthways and chop. Peel and chop the carrots and the onion. Place into a large pot over a medium-low heat with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the thyme and rosemary leaves, then and cook for around 20 minutes, stirring frequently.
Add the flour to the veg, stirring well to combine, then pour in the tomatoes and wine. Add the oxtail and any roasting juices, cover with the beef stock and stir well. Turn the heat up to high and bring to the boil, then pop the lid on and simmer for around 5 hours, or until the meat falls away from the bone, stirring every hour or so and adding a splash of water to loosen, if needed. Add the potatoes in the last hour if you choose to add it.
Let it cool for about 10 minutes. Using rubber gloves, strip the meat from the bones and return to the pan, discarding the bones. Add a good splash of Worcestershire sauce, season to taste and enjoy with creamy mash.