Beef and Guinness Oxtail Stew

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Beef and Guinness stew is a bit of a rarity in Singapore compared to its more popular French counterpart, Beef Bourguignon, so it was quite a surprise when I discovered it at a weekend brunch restaurant located in the Bishan Park area. They served it with a filo pastry and potato mash and it was quite tasty, though the gravy was a bit thin.

Somehow, that got me daydreaming about experimenting with the dish, with a few improvisations. Instead of using the usual beef chuck stew, I’ve decided to use  beef oxtail instead because there’s something about the combination of the meat section and fats over slow-cook that I felt would fit this recipe perfectly.

Serves 3

Ingredients:

300g oxtail

1 tbsp plain flour

1 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper

1 tbsp garlic salt

25 g of butter

1 large white onion, chopped

1 tsp finely chopped garlic

1 can of Hunt’s tomato sauce

200ml beef stock

200ml water

2 tbsp HP sauce

1/3 can of Guinness Stout

1 and 1/2 carrots, chopped

Mixed herbs flakes (I used Masterfoods)

Parsley flakes

Method:

Wash the oxtail and pat dry. Lightly sprinkle the salt and black pepper over the oxtail to season, then add the plain flour to coat. Leave to marinade for 5 minutes.

oxtail

Heat up 2 tablespoons of cooking oil in a wok and add in the oxtail. Fry till the oxtail turns slightly brownish. Remove once all sides are browned (about 4-6 minutes).

Turn on the oven to about 220 degrees celsius.

Using the leftover oil, add in the butter to melt. Fry the onions till slightly translucent, then add in the chopped garlic. Add in the tomato sauce and stir around a bit, before adding in the browned oxtail pieces. Stir till oxtail is coated and add in the Guinness Stout, followed by the beef stock. Bring to a slow simmer on medium heat. In the meantime, also add a dash of mixed herbs, parsley and HP sauce to improve the robustness of the stew.

Add the water and stir in the black pepper and garlic salt to taste. After the mixture comes to a slow boil, transfer to a container to be placed in the oven. I used a Corningware container in this place.

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Let the stew sit in the oven for 30 minutes, then turn down the heat to about 180 degrees to let it slow-cook for the next 2-2.5 hours. Do remember to check intermittently to ensure the sides are not burnt. To test if it’s ready, the meat should fall off the bones and of course, there’s no better way than to test by tasting it for yourself! 🙂

I made a Japanese potato mash to accompany the stew as well and just to replicate the whole works I had at the restaurant, I’ve also baked a filo pastry to accompany the stew. You can get these frozen filo pastries at the frozen section of any supermarket.

Here’s the recipe for the Japanese potato mash.

Ingredients:

2 large potatoes

1/3 Japanese cucumber, chopped

Black pepper

25g butter

1 tbsp mayonnaise

1/2 tsp apple vinegar

1/2 tsp garlic salt

1/2 cup milk

Chopped carrots (optional)

Method:

Boil the potatoes till softened (about 30 minutes). Skin the potatoes and using a potato ricer, mash the potatoes. Add in the butter, milk, mayonnaise and continue to mash till well-incorporated. Add in the chopped cucumber and apple vinegar and mix. Sprinkle the black pepper and garlic salt to taste.

Assemble the works and enjoy!

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