Cocoa Chipotle Cartel Ox Cheek & Tail

We were really chuffed when the good folks at Angus & Oink asked us to try out some of their products and come up with a recipe for them.  It’s great that the whole range is made from high quality ingredients, with no “nasties” and this really shows when you come to taste them.  We love the Mr Rubba Rubba dust – really fresh & zesty, with whole fennel & caraway seeds, and a really nice “pop” on the tongue.  Although it’s recommended for pork, chicken and fish, we felt the profile would work well on some rich cuts of beef too.  As for the Voodoo Mango sauce, we could drink it by the bottle load, if it wasn’t for their beers tasting so good as well!

All of these flavours, made us think of the tropics and inspired us to go for something with a kind of Caribbean edge. Rich, sticky beef, with a fresh, fruity contrast coming from the Voodoo ‘slaw.  We served it on homemade Jamaican style Coco Breads, but it would work equally well on corn tortillas as a soft taco or tostada or even in a Trinidad style Dhalpuri roti.

Ingredients

Voodoo slaw

  • ¼ head  white cabbage, sliced
  • ¼ head  red cabbage, sliced
  • 1  carrot, grated
  • 4  spring onions, finely sliced
  • ½ teaspoon  sea salt
  • Juice of ½ a lime
  • Handful  fresh chopped coriander leaf
  • 3-4 tablespoons  A&O Voodoo Mango sauce

Scotch Bonnet Salsa

  • 2  red/orange Scotch Bonnet peppers, seeds and membrane removed, finely chopped
  • 4  banana shallots, finely chopped
  • Juice & zest of ½ a lime
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Handful fresh chopped coriander leaf

Method

Put four bottles of Angus & Oink Cocoa Chipotle Cartel Porter in the fridge.

Trim any excess exterior fat and sinew from the cheeks and the bulk of the “hard” fat from the oxtail.

Then give everything a very liberal dusting of Angus & Oink Mr Rubba Rubba and leave the rub to set.

Fire up your smoker or BBQ for indirect cooking at 130ºC/270ºF – When you’re up to temperature, add a chunk or two of hickory to your coals, for smoke.

Place your cheeks and tail into a foil tray and put in the smoker – After an hour, add another chunk of smoking wood.

Once the meat has been in for about 2½ – 3 hours, using a knife, poke some holes in the Scotch Bonnets and put in a saucepan with the beef stock, 1 bottle of A&O Cocoa Chipotle Cartel Porter, the red onion, garlic, thyme, allspice berries and molasses – Gently heat this until just starting to simmer and then pour into the foil tray with your cheeks and tail, being careful not to wash off any of the bark, which should’ve set nicely by now.

Cook for another 2 hours.

Check on the meats – By now the cheeks should be just starting to give and the oxtail should be starting to break down.  Cover the tray, tightly with foil and carry on cooking.

Meanwhile, make the ‘slaw by combining the cabbages, carrot and spring onions in a bowl.  Squeeze over the lime juice, add the salt and mix well – Leave to sit for about half an hour.  Then mix in the A&O Voodoo Mango sauce and the chopped coriander.  Place in the fridge until ready to use.

For the salsa, mix the chopped Scotch Bonnet and shallots in a bowl; add the salt and squeeze over the lime juice and mix well.  Add the chopped coriander and lime zest about 10 minutes before serving.

Check the meats after about an hour.  If the cheeks seem like they’ll come apart easily, you’re ready to go.  If not, put the foil back on and return to the smoker and check again in half an hour.

When the meat is ready, remove it from the tray and place in a warmed bowl and cover to rest while you deal with the sauce.

Pour the braising liquid through a sieve, into a saucepan, making sure you get any nice gooey bits from the bottom of the foil tray and put over a high heat to reduce by about one third to a half.

Pull the oxtail meat from the bones (You won’t get loads, but the oxtail will have given lots of flavour to the sauce) and pull apart the ox cheeks, being careful to remove any seams of collagen that remain.  Put them back in the foil tray and mix with your reduced sauce.

Pile your chosen serving vessel high with the slaw, then meat, top with Scotch Bonnet salsa and extra Voodoo Mango sauce to serve.

Take your four bottles of A&O Cocoa Chipotle Cartel Porter from the fridge, pop them open and enjoy!


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