Red Wine-braised Oxtails


Red Wine-braised Oxtails

Total Time: 30 Mins


  • 4 pounds oxtails, cut at joints
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 bottle (750 ml.) Cabernet Sauvignon or other dry red wine 
  • 3 cups fat-skimmed beef broth
  • About 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves or 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon or 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Yukon Gold Mashed Potatoes
  • Caramelized Root Vegetables 
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Fresh thyme sprigs, rinsed


  1. Rinse oxtails and pat dry; trim off and discard excess fat. Sprinkle lightly all over with salt and pepper, and place in a 12- by 17-inch roasting pan. Bake, uncovered, in a 450° regular or convection oven, turning once with tongs, until oxtails are well browned all over, 30 to 40 minutes total.
  2. Add wine, broth, 1/4 cup vinegar, rosemary, tarragon, and thyme to pan. Stir gently to mix and scrape browned bits free. Cover pan tightly with foil.
  3. Bake in a 325° regular or convection oven until meat is very tender when pierced, 2 1/4 to 2 3/4 hours.
  4. Mound mashed potatoes equally in the centers of four wide, shallow bowls. With tongs, lift oxtails from braising liquid and arrange equally around mashed potatoes. Scatter caramelized vegetables over meat, cover loosely with foil, and keep warm in a 200° oven.
  5. Skim and discard any fat from braising liquid. Boil, uncovered, over high heat, stirring often, until reduced to 3 cups, 12 to 14 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix cornstarch with 2 tablespoons water until smooth. Stir into braising liquid, and stir until mixture boils and thickens. Taste and, if desired, add 1 to 2 more teaspoons vinegar.
  6. Ladle sauce over meat and caramelized vegetables; garnish with thyme sprigs. Add salt and pepper to taste.