JASON Wright, head chef at Steak Edinburgh and new cocktail bar and lounge Pepper – opening in May – gives us his recipe for oxtail soup and an accompanying cocktail, while Paul Kitching of 21212 reveals his recipe for porridge biscuits.
1/4 kg jointed oxtail
4 tbsp plain flour
2-3 tbsp olive oil
1 large carrot, roughly chopped
1 parsnip, roughly chopped
1 celery stalk, roughly chopped
1 bay leaf
a few sprigs of thyme
1 tsp black peppercorns
2 tsp tomato puree
300ml red wine
1.2 litres beef stock
2 tsp softened butter
a handful or chopped curly parsley
a square of pre-rolled puff pastry
1 whole egg
2 tbsp milk
Trim the excess fat from the oxtail pieces and set aside. In a bowl, mix 2 tbsp of the flour with salt and pepper, meanwhile heat half the oil in a large heavy based pan until hot.
Coat the oxtail pieces with the flour, shake off any excess and fry on each side until evenly browned, then remove from the pan. Add the remaining oil to the pan along with the chopped vegetables, herbs and peppercorns. Cook until the vegetables begin to soften and slightly brown stirring occasionally. Stir in the tomato puree and the remaining seasoned flour, adding a little more oil if necessary. Stir frequently for another minute or two. Pour in the red wine and scrape the base of the pan with a wooden spoon. Boil for a few minutes. Return the oxtail to the pan and pour in the stock so it covers the oxtail. Bring to a simmer and skim of any excess fat and oils. Cover the pan and cook gently for 3 hours until the oxtail is very tender and falls off the bone easily. Carefully remove the oxtail pieces and place in a large bowl to cool slightly.
Strain the cooking stock through a fine sieve into a clean pan, pushing down on the vegetables with the back of a ladle to extract as much liquid and flavour as possible. Pull the meat from the oxtail and shred into small pieces.
To thicken the stock, make a roux with the remaining 2 tbsp of flour with the butter, then whisk into the simmering stock, a little at a time. Simmer for 5 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning of the soup, then add the shredded meat to the stack and warm though. Sprinkle with lots of chopped parsley. Then serve into bowls and allow to cool slightly.
Cut lids from your puff pastry to fit the top of the bowl, then egg wash using a brush round the edge of the pastry, using 1 whole egg whisked with 2 tbsp of milk and using the back of a fork press the pastry against the edge of the bowl. Wash the top with the remaining egg mix and bake in the oven at 180 degrees for 12 minutes. Don’t attempt to add the puff pastry too early to the hot soup as it will make the pastry soft.
SMOKED OLD FASHIONED WITH CHOCOLATE TRUFFLE
50ml Woodford Reserve
1 bar spoon of maple syrup
Put one bar spoon of maple syrup in the mixing glass, add two dashes of angostura, one orange and mix. Add the bourbon and dissolve the maple syrup. Stir over ice and single strain into decanter. Using the smoking gun to smoke in apple flavoured wood chips into decanter and cap. Serve with orange twist, cherry and truffle.
PORRIDGE OAT BISCUIT
500g porridge oats
3tspn curry powder
Melt butter in a flat-bottomed sauce pan. Add porridge oats, leave 100g aside. Pour in milk and add curry powder, sultanas. Cook until a thick porridge. Line a flat tray with greaseproof paper
Place porridge on centre of tray and cover tray with cling film, use a rolling pin to roll porridge, flat remove cling film and sprinkle over remaining oats. Cook in a low oven for 3-4 hours or until hard and snap easily. Break up to manageable pieces and serve.