Oxtail Stew with Dates & Bacon

You can’t beat a rich, hearty stew and without doubt oxtail makes the most flavoursome stews. This recipe is a lovely way to use oxtail in a richly flavoured stew with subtle Mediterranean flavours! Oxtail is one of those much under utilised cuts of meat but when slow cooked in a stew the bony, gelatinous chunks yield the most flavoursome stock and meltingly tender meat as in this oxtail stew with dates & bacon. Serve with roasted squash and some couscous to soak up all the lovely juices.

January 2, 2018
: 3
: 20 min
: 5 hr 15 min
: 5 hr 35 min
: Moderately easy

This slow cooked oxtail stew with dates and bacon is perfect for serving all year round with its Mediterranean flavours.


  • 1kg oxtail
  • seasoned flour
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 150g bacon, chopped
  • 400g shallots, peeled
  • 4 carrots, peeled and sliced into 1cm slices
  • 6 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 15g fresh parsley, finely chop stalks, leaves for garnish
  • ½ tsp allspice
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 300ml red wine
  • 500ml beef stock
  • Step 1 Heat the olive oil in a heavy based casserole pot over a medium to high heat. Roll the pieces of oxtail in the seasoned flour and sear on all sides in the pot. Once browned remove and put to one side.
  • Step 2 Add the bacon to the pot and cook for about 3-5 mins until browned and crispy. Return the oxtail to the pot along with any leftover seasoned flour.
  • Step 3 Reduce to a medium heat and add the shallots, carrots, and parsley stalks. Cook for a few minutes.
  • Step 4 Turn up the heat to high and pour in the red wine, stirring to scrape up all the sticky brown residue in the bottom of the pot.
  • Step 5 Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a gentle simmer before covering with a lid and transferring to a pre-heated oven at 150’C/130’C fan for 5 hours. Stir once or twice during the cooking time to ensure even cooking and top up with water if necessary.
  • Step 6 Garnish with chopped parsley leaves and serve with roasted squash (any will do) and couscous.