Best Bajan Oxtail Stew

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“I learned to make this when I was living in Barbados. My friend, who is the grandson of a well known local cook in Speightstown (Mile and a Quarter), never used measurements, so everything here is approximated to the best of my ability. Feel free to play around with it, as it is hard to go wrong. You can find all the ingredients at any West Indian supermarket. This is the best oxtail stew I have ever had and I consider myself quite the connoisseur. If you want to impress your West Indian friends, try this delicious dish.”
4hrs 30mins

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Marinade: put the clean oxtail in a large bowl and add all the ingredients to the meat so it is completely coated. Cover bowl, refrigerate and allow to marinate for at least 1 hour or overnight.
  2. Stew: Heat vegetable oil and brown sugar on medium in a large pot until the mixture turns a light brown. Add the oxtail and brown them for a few minutes per side. Add browning sauce and stir.
  3. Add water so that meat is almost covered. Turn heat up and add bay leaves, scotch bonnet pepper (make sure this doesn't break!), cloves and herbs. Cover pot and bring to the boil then reduce heat to medium and cook for 3 hours, or until meat is extremely tender. Stir every 30 minutes and add hot water whenever necessary: meat should always be mostly covered.
  4. Remove scotch bonnet pepper carefully after about 1 1/2 hours of cooking. After 3 hours, or when the meat is done, add beef bouillon, ketchup, potatoes and carrots. Cook for another 30 minutes.
  5. Taste and see if you need to add anymore spices or salt. It should be perfect at this point. If the sauce needs thickening just add a teaspoon of cornstarch or flour. Serve with rice and peas and a side of coleslaw. Enjoy!

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