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I Don’t Eat Tail


My son’s elementary school calendar this month includes a president’s favorite food for each day of the month. Today the president named is Dwight D. Eisenhower, who enjoyed oxtail soup. Though I have heard of it, I have never seen hide nor hair of such a soup, not in a person’s home or in a restaurant. Have you ever tried it?

I visited the Food Network’s site to investigate. Apparently, “the oxtail was once really from an ox but nowadays the term generally refers to beef or veal tail. Though it’s quite bony, this cut of meat is very flavorful. Because it can be extremely tough (depending on the age of the animal), oxtail requires long, slow braising.”

Based on this information, I’m going to have to pass. I don’t eat tail, however flavorful. It’s hard enough for me to stomach dark meat chicken or the fatty part of a brisket; I doubt I would have the patience to gnaw away at a tough tail. I do admit the vegetables look delicious.


In any event, it is a common dish in the U.K., and there is even a fellow WordPresser who has provided a recipe for oxtail stew. He goes so far as to say, “All those odd bits, wobbly bits and squidgy bits have such an amazing range of textures and flavours.” A shiver just ran down my spine. I think he would do quite well to travel with the adventurous Andrew Zimmern, who forced poor Adam Richman into eating lutefisk on yesterday’s episode of Man vs. Food. Andrew loves squidgy bits.


Tomorrow’s president is Ulysses S. Grant, who liked to eat turkey. Now that one I get. And apparently, Ike liked it, too.


12 thoughts on “I Don’t Eat Tail”

  1. Personally I like tail. A long,slow and simmering braise brings out all the sweetness of the flesh and leaves it both moist and tender. A absolute delight for the senses.


  2. My mother used to make this all the time. I never liked it, although my brother still makes it. All those odd bits, wobbly bits and squidgy bits really turn me off. tjcuzns is right it is very tender.
    Ruth from At Home on the Road


  3. I have eaten oxtail soup, Kerbey. It was offered on the menu during a cruise on Royal Caribbean International, which probably backs up the UK connection you discovered.

    The beef broth was clear, and the chunks of tail were tender.

    I liked it.

    But not as much as I liked lobster tail night on the cruise.


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