Rabo Encendido – Cuban Oxtail Stew

2.5 lbs oxtail

~2 T parsley, finely chopped
~2 T oregano, finely chopped
2 T garlic, finely chopped
2 T onion, finely chopped
4 chiles de arbol
1 T salt
1/3 cup red wine
1 tablespoon olive oil (+2 tablespoons for later cooking)

1 Large Yellow Onion, finely chopped
1.5 Bell peppers, finely chopped
2 T minced garlic
1 cup red wine

~2 T parsley, finely chopped
1/4 t cumin
1/4 t black pepper
2 1/4 t sugar
1  1/2 T white vinegar
12 oz tomato sauce (plain)
2 cups water
This oxtail stew is hearty and delicious. Like most Cuban food, it eschews burning spiciness in favor of a mild heat.

Trim oxtails and mix together chiles, herbs, garlic, onions, wine, salt, the tablespoon of olive oil and rub over meat. Cover and refrigerate overnight or for up to several days.

Put remaining olive oil in a large skillet and brown the oxtail, reserving the marinade. When browned, place both the marinade and the oxtail in a large stew pot.

In the same skillet, with the same oil, cook the garlic, onions and peppers for the sofrito until the onions begin to soften and turn translucent. Add the red wine and bring to a boil until the wine reduces (about 15 minutes).

Add the sofrito to the same pot already containing the oxtails and add all the other ingredients before putting the mixture onto high heat and bringing to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for two and a half hours or until the meat is tender and easily separated from the bone. If the meat wasn't adequately trimmed, grease can tend to rise to the top of the stew, but it's easy to pour off.

Serve with white rice. In addition, I had a cabbage carrot slaw and some corn fritters (made from a corn bread mix).

This recipe, the sides and even the plating are all based on those of Pambiche, a fantastic restaurant in Portland, OR.