Oxtail Soup (Mexican)

oxtails (I bought about a pound, for 4.89 apparently)
veg oil
1 onion, small dice
2-4 cloves of garlic, finely minced
1 large potato or several small ones, medium dice.  (Yukon gold would have been good.  Couldn’t find them.)
1 large handful of green beans, medium dice
4 morita chiles, rehydrated in hot water and chopped fine (you could sub in chipotle in adobo for this.  Moritas are hard to find outside of a mexican market)
1 large can of whole peeled tomatoes, squished (The recipe calls for 4 tomatoes, but tomatoes are only good in the summer, maybe not in Mexico, but here, in the winter, canned is so much better than fresh, let’s just count that as my missed Monday soap box ok I am done now. Also, squished is the technical term. Ahem.)
water
salt and pepper to taste

First, toast chiles in a dry pan.   Remove stem and as many seeds as desired, depending on how how hot/spicy you want your soup. Bring water to a boil, and then pour water over chiles to rehydrate for 10-15 minutes.  Make sure chiles are fully submerged. Remove chiles and chop fine.  Reserve water.

Preheat pan on medium high and season both sides of the oxtails.

Once pan is hot, add enough veg oil to cover the bottom. Sear oxtails on both sides until deeply browned.

Remove oxtails from pot and add onions and a pinch of salt.  Cook until translucent and softened and then add potatoes and a heavy pinch of salt.  Cook for 2-3 minutes until slightly browned.  (Deglaze with chile water as needed). Add green beans and another pinch of salt,

Not that it matters for this soup, but little did I know when I first started cooking, you’re supposed to keep the “elf shoe” for presentation. Yeah, live and learn.

and cook another 2 minutes, until beginning to soften.  Add garlic and chiles and cook for 1 minute to open up the flavors.

Add tomatoes and one more tiny pinch of salt.

Put oxtails back in. Cover with water (I tried chicken stock but it just obscured the oxtail flavor). Bring to a boil, reduce immediately to a simmer.  Simmer for 1 hour or until flavors have cohered.

Remove oxtails. Taste for seasoning. Should be about right with all that consistent salting you did.  Adjust. Eat.

Sadly, I couldn’t get a good pic because piping hot steam kept obscuring the shot. On the upside, piping hot steam kept obscuring the shot.

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