A rich, economical stew, Queue de Boeuf au Vin (keh d’berf oh vahn) should be served with plain boiled rice and a crisp
green salad.4 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 oxtails, cut into pieces
4 fl. oz. brandy
2 onions, thinly sliced
2 carrots, scraped and sliced
16 fl. oz. dry red wine
16 fl. oz. beef stock or water bouquet garni, consisting of
4 parsley sprigs,
1 thyme spray and
1 bay leaf tied together
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 lb. tomatoes, blanched, peeled, seeded and chopped or
14 oz. canned peeled tomatoes, drained
4 oz. stoned black olives
Preheat the oven to cool 300°F (Gas Mark 2, 150°C).
In a large frying-pan, heat the oil over moderate heat. When the oil is hot, add the oxtail pieces, a few at a time, and cook them, turning occasionally, for 5 to 8 minutes or until they are lightly browned. Using tongs or a slotted spoon, transfer the oxtail pieces to a large flameproof casserole. Cook the remaining oxtail pieces in the same way.
In a small saucepan, heat the brandy over low heat until it is warm. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the brandy over the oxtail pieces. Ignite the brandy and gently shake the casserole until the flames die away.
Add the onions and carrots to the casserole and stir well to mix.
Add the wine, stock or water, bouquet garni, salt and pepper.
Cover the casserole and place it in the oven. Cook for 2| to 3 hours or until the meat is very tender and comes away from the bones.
Remove the casserole from the oven and remove and discard the bouquet garni. Set the casserole aside to cool completely.
Place the casserole in the refrigerator to chill for at least 8 hours or overnight.
Remove the casserole from the refrigerator and skim off the fat with a metal spoon.
Add the tomatoes and olives to the casserole and place the casserole oyer moderate heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes or until it is very hot.
Remove the casserole from the heat and serve immediately.