Delve into the heart of Chinese culinary tradition with Chinese Oxtail Soup, a robust and savory dish that combines tender oxtails with an array of aromatic spices and herbs. This time-honored soup not only delights the palate with its rich flavors but also provides a comforting and nourishing experience. Join us in unraveling the steps to create this Chinese Oxtail Soup, perfect for bringing a taste of traditional warmth to your dining table.
Ingredients: Chinese Oxtail Soup
- 2 pounds oxtails, trimmed and cleaned
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 3 stalks celery, sliced
- 4 slices ginger
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 star anise
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 4 dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked and sliced
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons Shaoxing wine (Chinese rice wine)
- 8 cups beef broth
- Salt and white pepper to taste
- Green onions, chopped, for garnish
- Fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish
- Cooked white rice, for serving (optional)
Prepping the Oxtails:
- Rinse the oxtails under cold water and pat them dry with paper towels.
- Trim excess fat from the oxtails.
- In a large pot, heat a bit of vegetable oil over medium-high heat.
- Add sliced onions, carrots, celery, ginger, and crushed garlic. Sauté until the vegetables are slightly softened.
Simmering the Soup:
- Add the cleaned oxtails to the pot and brown them on all sides.
- Pour in Shaoxing wine and soy sauce. Stir to combine and let it cook for a few minutes to allow the alcohol to evaporate.
- Add beef broth, star anise, cinnamon sticks, and sliced shiitake mushrooms to the pot.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for about 2-3 hours until the oxtails become tender and the flavors meld.
Seasoning and Serving:
- Season the soup with salt and white pepper to taste.
- Remove the star anise and cinnamon sticks from the pot.
- Ladle the Chinese Oxtail Soup into bowls.
- Garnish each serving with chopped green onions and fresh cilantro leaves.
- Serve hot on its own or over a bed of cooked white rice for a complete and satisfying meal.
- Slow Cooker Method: For an even more tender result, you can transfer the soup to a slow cooker and let it simmer on low for 6-8 hours.
- Vegetable Variation: Feel free to add other vegetables like bok choy or spinach during the last 15 minutes of cooking.
Conclusion: Chinese Oxtail Soup
Chinese Oxtail Soup is a treasure trove of flavors, combining the richness of oxtails with aromatic spices and hearty vegetables. Whether enjoyed as a standalone dish or paired with rice, this soup is a testament to the timeless appeal of traditional Chinese cuisine. Share the warmth and nourishment of Chinese Oxtail Soup with family and friends, and savor the comforting essence of this classic creation. Bon appétit!
FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) section for Chinese Oxtail Soup:
The main ingredients typically include oxtails, water or broth (beef or chicken), Chinese herbs (such as goji berries and dried red dates), aromatics (ginger and green onions), and sometimes additional vegetables.
Oxtails are usually cleaned, trimmed, and then simmered in water or broth until tender. The slow cooking process allows the rich flavors to be extracted from the oxtails.
Some variations may include vegetables like carrots or daikon radish. Chinese herbs are often added for their medicinal properties and to enhance the overall flavor.
Common herbs include goji berries, dried red dates, and sometimes Chinese yam or astragalus root. These herbs contribute to both the flavor and perceived health benefits of the soup.
The soup is typically seasoned with salt and sometimes a small amount of soy sauce or light seasoning. The focus is on the natural flavors of the oxtails and Chinese herbs.
Yes, Chinese Oxtail Soup can be adapted for slow cookers or instant pots. Adjust cooking times and follow device-specific instructions.