Coda Alla Vaccinara (Butcher-Style Oxtail) – Woolworths Taste – Pg 108 – May 2015

Coda Alla Vaccinara
Coda Alla Vaccinara

Their pic on the left, mine on the right.

Delicious!  Remarkably easy to make, but this really should simmer for at least 3 hours to get the fall-of-the-bone effect just right. It is really fun adding the bitter chocolate at the end and watching the dish transform from an orangey colour to a deep brown. I used 90% Cocoa Lindt which is perfect.  My camera is no match for the Woolies guys, but I was impressed that the dish came out exactly as planned.

Things I had to google:

– How to stud an onion.  So you actually keep the onion whole, just peel and chop of the ends, then simply press the cloves into the uncut sides of the onion, like studs. Pop it like this, cut side down, into pot.

– A whole head of garlic, actually means the entire bulb.  I had gotten used to gratuitous amounts of garlic lately but even this took me by surprise.  My own tip – rather peel about 4 cloves and pop into the pot whole, otherwise you will be fishing garlic skins out of your otherwise delicious oxtail later.

– What is pancetta?  It is Italian cured belly of pork.

I just love that the dish is really just meat and tomato based, feels pretty healthy, tastes great and wholesome.  They didn’t recommend what to serve it with, so I recommend risotto for a really rich dish.

We just ate it with normal rice to keep it a bit lighter.

Candied Citrus peel – really not the easiest thing to find! I had to substitute with castor-sugared orange-zest.  I would actually like to try this with candied citrus peel as I think this would be great.  Traditionally gremolata (this topping for oxtail / osso bucco) is just parsley, garlic and lemon zest, so I found the blanched celery a bit gross (I prefer this cooked into my food and unidentifiable) but enjoyed the pine nut addition. They don’t mention flat leafed parsley in their recipe but had this in their picture, luckily I had some in fridge and could recreate exactly.

Effort : Low

Time : 3 hours cooking, 15 mins prep

Appearance – 8/10

Taste – 8/10

Would I make this again?  Yes! I would have reservations about the celery next time but am looking out for candied citrus peel so I can give it another go.

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