Preheat the oven on 320 degrees F (160 degrees C).
Rinse clean and dry the
Oxtails (3.4 lb)
with a clean towel. Heat a deep saute-pan with
Oil (1/4 cup)
over HIGH heat. Brown the oxtail in batches until entire surface is covered and no more blood is being released. Set the oxtails aside.
Drain the oil and leave only 2 tablespoons in the pan, and turn the heat down to MEDIUM. Add the
Fresh Ginger (1/2 cup)
and cook until they shrivel up and get nicely browned on the edges, about 5 minutes. Add oxtails back into the pan.
Garlic (12 cloves)
Star Anise (3)
Red Sichuan Peppercorns (1/2 Tbsp)
Granulated Sugar (1 Tbsp)
Red Chili Peppers (2)
. Turn heat to HIGH. Keep turning the ingredients until the sugar caramelizes, and everything is coated in a deep brown, amber sheen.
Transfer ALL the ingredients into a cast-iron or oven-proof pot, and return it to the stove. Add the
Rice Wine (1/3 cup)
Soy Sauce (1/2 cup)
. Let it gently boil with all the ingredients for a minute and turn to evenly coat.
Chicken Broth (1 cup)
and bring back to a simmer. The amount of liquid shouldn’t be able to cover the ingredients - this isn’t a stew, and should taste slightly UNDER-SEASONED at this point because of the excess water. If it taste generally BLAND, then adjust with more soy sauce.
Transfer the pot with the lid on to the oven and let braise for 3 to 3 1/2 hours. Go back and turn the oxtail once every hour or so to ensure even braising.
The oxtail should be very tender and almost falling off the bone, and the braising liquid should have reduced dramatically. After braising, carefully remove the oxtail from the braising liquid without tearing them.
Tilt the pot to direct all the braising liquid to one side, and skim off as much fat from the surface as you can, without reducing the actual sauce on the bottom. Discard the star anise and ginger slices, pressing to extract sauce.
Return the oxtail back into the pot, and return it to the stove over HIGH heat. Add
Rice Vinegar (1 tsp)
and reduce the sauce SLIGHTLY, just until the oxtail are coated in a shiny sheen.
Serve the oxtail over hot steamed rice. They get even better the next day.