This Roman-style oxtail ragù recipe calls for no garlic or onions, which might sound like a red flag to some. But trust us—the deep, pure flavor of stewed beef with tomatoes and celery is nothing short of a revelation. Romans often make this ragù a day or two ahead, embracing how the flavors improve in the fridge.
Featured in “The Only Good Thing About My Ex Was His Mom’s Amazing Ragù Recipe,” by Katie Parla.
- 2½ lb. oxtails, trimmed (see footnote)
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 Tbsp. lard, or olive oil
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 1½ (28-oz.) cans whole peeled tomatoes, juice reserved, coarsely chopped
- 5 medium celery stalks, trimmed and coarsely chopped
- 1 lb. dry rigatoni or bombolotti pasta
- ⅓ cup finely grated Pecorino Romano
Notes: Frozen oxtails can be used in place of fresh; be sure to thaw them completely before proceeding. An immersion or regular blender will also work for puréeing the sauce, but before processing, be sure to fish out any small pieces of bone that may have come loose during cooking.
This recipe is from Parla’s Pastas, a column by the Rome-based, New York Times best-selling cookbook author Katie Parla covering traditional and inspired recipes from Italy’s 20 regions. Get ready for a carb-driven journey through the trattorias of Rome, the kitchens of Sicily (her ancestral homeland), rural Campania, and beyond. Fire up a pot of water, and andiamo!