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Oxtail Soup Pascua

Oxtail Soup Pascua

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Recipe By: Leo Pascua*

United Methodist Leo Pascua is a Filipino American who grew up in Hawaii where food is influenced by Filipino, Japanese, Hawaiian, Chinese, Puerto Rican and many other cultures. Generations of immigrants brought their tastes of home. Hawaii is a melting pot of traditions and customs. Variations of oxtail soup are popular in Hawaii and in the Philippines.

Leo Pascua says this 12-hour, oxtail soup is comfort food. The broth is exotic and rich with the flavors of ginger, star anise, and the interesting mixture of both chicken and beef bouillon. You can also add bay leaves and shiitake mushrooms for extra flavor and texture. Pascua prefers to prepare this soup a day in advance to allow time to cool and chill the broth. This allows for easy removal of fat that rises to the top and it also allows time for the flavors to set. There’s plenty of tender meat. Adding some white rice, green onion, and peanuts (if you wish), makes this soup a satisfying meal.

Cook’s notes from Leo Pascua:
"The long cooking time on high heat allows everything to be put in frozen, which is convenient. Costco oxtails are large and meaty. Prolonged simmering dissolves the cartilaginous tissue (found primarily at the articular surface and secondarily at the growth plates at both ends of the vertebral segments) and turns the broth into a sturdy aspic with a velvety mouthfeel, maximized by the removal of fat.

Bouillon cubes can be quite salty, so correct the broth prior to serving. Likewise, add the peanuts just prior to serving; cooking them in the broth will render them soft and chalky."

2-5 lbs oxtails, rinsed
9 grams whole black peppercorns
5 grams whole star anise
150 grams fresh ginger, washed and coarsely chopped
5 bay leaves (optional)
3 cubes Knorr chicken bouillon cube
3 cubes Knorr beef bouillon cubes
1 large onion, chopped
10 clove garlic, peeled and smashed
8-10 dried shiitake mushrooms, soak in hot water x 30 min; drain; julienne (optional)

*** Garnish with ***
Cooked white rice
green onion, chopped
Chinese parsley, chopped
shelled and skinned raw peanuts


1. Enclose spice In an infusion ball or cheese cloth, place the peppercorns, star anise, ginger and bay leaf.

2. Add aromatics and broth base in a slow cooker pot with the loaded infusion ball. Add bouillon cubes, onion, garlic, and shiitake mushrooms (optional). Add chicken broth, plus enough water to cover.

3. Cook in slow cooker, high heat x 12 hours. Stir to redistribute half way through

4. Place in the refrigerator overnight for the flavors to develop and for the fat to solidify for removal. Reheat to boiling and readjust the seasonings again (note: may need to add water, as the bouillon cubes are very salty.)

5. Garnish with chopped green onions, Chinese parsley and peanuts.

Notes: Serve with rice; shoyu and grated ginger on the side


*Dr. Leo Pascua is a pediatrician who grew up on the island of Oahu in Hawaii. Pascua is a member of Wahiawa United Methodist Church where he has been the choir director for almost 30 years. Leo loves to cook and has a special room in his home to display his vast collection of cookbooks.

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This video was produced by United Methodist Communications in Nashville, TN. Contact is Lilla Marigza.

This video was first posted on July 20, 2020.

United Methodist Communications is an agency of The United Methodist Church

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