OXTAIL IS VERY RICH. TRY TO GET LARGE PIECES OF OXTAIL, AS THESE PIECES CONTAIN THE MOST MEAT. THE PIECES SHOULD PREFERABLY NOT BE TOO FATTY. Serves 6–8 • 1,5 kg oxtail • cake flour for coating meat • 40 ml olive oil • 1 onion, finely chopped • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped • 2 carrots, diced • 1 large stalk celery, diced • 1 x 400 g tin chopped tomatoes • 500 ml red wine • 250 ml boiling water • salt and freshly ground black
pepper • 2 bay leaves • 1 packet (800 g) square sheets of puff pastry (4 sheets of 200 g each) • 1 egg, beaten Heat oven to 180 °C. Roll the pieces of oxtail in flour. Shake off excess flour. Heat the olive oil in a large stovetopto-oven casserole. Fry the oxtail in batches until nicely browned. Remove the meat from the casserole and set aside. Fry the onion, garlic, carrots and celery in the same casserole until soft. Return the oxtail to the casserole. Add the tomatoes, red wine and boiling water. Season with salt and pepper and add the bay leaves. Stir through. Cover the casserole and bake the meat mixture for 3 hours, adding more water if necessary. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely – preferably overnight – in the fridge. Heat oven to 200 °C. When the meat mixture is cold, remove all the bones and excess fat that has congealed on the surface. Shred the meat. Use two of the square sheets of pastry to line a 26 cm loose-bottomed pie dish. Make sure that some of the pastry hangs over the sides of the dish. Spoon in the filling. Brush the rim of the pastry with beaten egg. Place another square sheet of pastry on top and press tightly against the rim to seal the edges of the pastry. Brush the pastry with beaten egg. Make a small hole in the centre of the pie. Take any pastry offcuts and shape into a long strip, then curl it around the hole. Using a cookie cutter, cut circles of different sizes from the remaining sheet of pastry. Arrange on top of the pie and brush with beaten egg. Place in a hot oven and bake for 45–60 minutes. The pastry should be golden brown and crispy. Serve hot.