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This is a several day process, that, if done properly, will result in the most tender, flavoursome stew imaginable. None of the ingredients are chosen purely by chance, but by several weeks of research into food and cooking, including the anatomical nature of meat, which foods contain congruent flavour compounds, and how those compounds react in certain situations. It is imperative to do this recipe justice and get the best you can afford (and you have to be able to afford a lot). I made two of these: one with a beef stock, one with a veal stock. The beef stock was made to satisfy the moral requests of certain diners. [u]Day 1 [/u] Place the oxtail in a saline solution and leave in the fridge for 24 hours Place the beef shin in a separate saline solution and leave in the fridge for 24 hours Make the stocks [b]Beef Stock[/b] Heat the dripping in a roasting tray at 200C/400F/GM6 Place the bones in the tray in a single layer and place in the oven for 2 hours, turning after an hour Peel the onion and cut it in half Cut an onion half into thick slices Place the slices into a dry pan on medium low heat Fry the onion, stirring occasionally, until caramelised and slightly charred Remove the bones from the tray and drain in a colander Pour 250ml cold water into the tray and scrape up the sediment Place the bones, onion, star anise, meat and fond (the water and sediment) into a large stockpot Pour in enough cold water to cover the bones and skim off any fat Bring to a gentle simmer Simmer for 6 hours, skimming constantly After six hours, cut the veg into uniform mirepoix (rough cut) Place the veg in a roasting tray of hot beef dripping Cover the tray with foil Place in the oven for an hour at 200C Add the veg to the stockpot Simmer for a further hour, skimming frequently Ladle the stock through a fine sieve, then through a muslin lined chinois Place the bowl of stock in a bowl of ice water and stir infrequently until cooled Cover in clingfilm and refrigerate [b]Veal Stock[/b] Heat 3 tbsp groundnut oil in a roasting tray at 200C Add the veal bones to the tray in a single layer Roast for 1/5 hours, turning after 45 minutes Drain the bones in a colander Pour the port into the tray and scrape up the sediment Place the bones, fond and geletin into a large stockpot Cover with cold water, skim and bring to a simmer Simmer for 6 hours, skimming frequently Cut the veg into mirepoix and add to the pot, along with the vine Simmer for a further hour Ladle the stock through a fine sieve, then through a muslin lined chinois Cool the stock in ice water, stirring infrequently Cover and refrigerate [b]Chicken Stock[/b] Cut the breasts into 1cm cubes Place in a stockpot and cover with cold water Bring the water to a simmer and skim off any floating sediment Add the veg, herbs and spices and simmer gently for 45 minutes Strain, as with the beef and veal stocks Cool, cover and refrigerate Day 2 in the next entry. This involves marinating the beef. Preparing the marinade requires a bit of work, but not quite as much as day one (perhaps).