Today’s Bento: Oxtail Stew, Steamed Rice & Chile-Hot Edamame


Bento basically refers to a lunch box. Most of us probably have some sort of memories associated with packed lunches (hopefully positive ones). Thanks to mom, mine was almost always tasty. My bento usually consisted of rice, meat or seafood, and vegetables. Then, I got a little box for fruit. If you were to make yourself a bento, what would be in it? I know. Hard question.

Here was mine today, and I think I chose well. If you’ve never tried oxtail stew before, I invite you to try this recipe. It’s easy and tasty!

Oxtail Stew & Edamame Bento served with Steamed Rice

Oxtail Stew & Edamame Bento
Serves 4
Oxtail Stew

  • 1.5lb of oxtails (if you get it from the butcher, ask for oxtails cut into segments)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 cup of red wine
  • 1 cup of beef stock
  • 2 whole cloves of garlic (peel still on)
  • Pinch of thyme
  • Half a bay leaf
  • Cilantro (optional, for garnish)
Chile-Hot Edamame
  • 1/2lb fresh edamame
  • 1 tbsp of peanut oil
  • 2 dried red chiles
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 tsp of star anise pieces
  • 1/2 tsp of salt
  • 1 cup of chicken broth
  • 4 cups of cooked white rice
Oxtail Stew
  1. Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium high heat. Season oxtails (make sure oxtails are patted dry) with salt and pepper. Brown meat on all sides in the Dutch oven. Place oxtails on a plate and set aside.
  2. Turn down heat to medium. Cook chopped onions in oven until browned (about 5 minutes). Add back oxtails, wine, stock, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, and 1/2 tsp of salt.
  3. Bring to a simmer and reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 3 hours, until meat is tender.
  4. Skim off fat from the surface or refrigerate overnight and discard fat layer the next day. (If you are reheating the next day, reheat first before proceeding.) Remove oxtails from Dutch oven and cook down liquid by half over medium-high heat. Add back oxtails and let oxtails simmer with thickened sauce for 30 minutes. Serve hot.
Chile-Hot Edamame
Recipe from LA Times
  1. Peel and rinse edamame under cold water, drain and set aside.
  2. Heat a wok over medium-high heat. Add the oil, swirl it around in the pan and heat until hot. Add chiles and garlic and stir-fry until aromatic (about 30 seconds). Add edamame and star anise and fry for 1 minute.
  3. Add the salt and broth and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the beans are very tender, about 7 minutes. Serve in bento with oxtail stew and white rice. Garnish with cilantro if desired.

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19 comments for “Today’s Bento: Oxtail Stew, Steamed Rice & Chile-Hot Edamame

  1. BestOodles
    August 9, 2011 at 6:58 am

    thank you for comment Jessica. I see you use Duch oven often and I am debating myself to get one or not but every times I read you used it I wanna go buy that. I am refrain from buying that since I do not extra space from my shelf.

    Pressure cooker is must have in every household in my option since it can cook a piece of meat a fraction of time compare to conventional pot or oven.

  2. Jay
    August 9, 2011 at 10:13 am

    wow…sounds very tempting n appetizing..:P
    Tasty Appetite

  3. Faith
    August 9, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    I have to say, this is tastier than any lunchbox I had growing up, lol! The oxtail stew looks fantastic!

  4. Junia
    August 9, 2011 at 4:27 pm

    i've actually never thought about flavoring edamame! awesome recipe jessica.

    and my lunch box memories were a nightmare. hahaha. my mom made me sandwiches…and i really didn't like them!

  5. Peggy
    August 10, 2011 at 2:14 am

    yeah, that definitely looks like the most delicious bento I've ever seen! Gotta try me some oxtail stew soon =)

  6. Lazaro Cooks
    August 10, 2011 at 2:42 am

    Oxtail is a true culinary delight. Love the bright & bold flavors in this dish. Lovely bento indeed.

  7. Marina
    August 10, 2011 at 9:03 am

    Mmm, sounds yummi.. My bento box would probably have something unhealthy.. Terrible, I know 🙂

  8. Tes
    August 10, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    I love oxtail! I need to try this recipe 🙂

  9. lisa is cooking
    August 10, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    The chile hot edamame sounds so good. I'd be happy with a bento with just rice and the edamame!

  10. Tina (PinayInTexas)
    August 10, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    Wow! What a perfect lunch bento! I love oxtail and edamame, so this is for me!

  11. Nami | Just One Cookbook
    August 11, 2011 at 2:11 am

    I love oxtail – well, I have to say I found this yummy part of meat later in life. My husband actually loves it so I started to cook… I know how this stew will taste. DELICIOUS!!! I'm bookmarking this – your bento looks delicious. Everyone must envy your bento. 😉

  12. 5 Star Foodie
    August 11, 2011 at 2:35 am

    That would be an awesome lunch for sure! The oxtail stew sounds so flavorful and I love the accompaniment of Chile-Hot Edamame, so bright and just perfect with the spicy kick.

  13. Ruth
    August 11, 2011 at 7:26 am

    Oh, wow! That oxtail looks amazing! I wish this was my lunch….

  14. Cheryl and Adam @
    August 11, 2011 at 7:54 pm

    Most lunch box memories seem to revolve around peanut butter and jelly and embossed super-heroes, but at that age the appreciation of ox-tail stew probably wasn't there. Today, on the other hand, this would be perfect any day. Yes Please!

  15. wok with ray
    August 12, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    I love oxtails especially for stewing, because you get the flavor coming from the bones, and meat. Also, once tenderized, meat will just fall off the bones. Beautiful looking dish. Have a great weekend!

    ~ ray ~

  16. tigerfish
    August 12, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    I love a good oxtail stew and it has been ages since I had one. Your bento is complete and delicious.

  17. Quay Po Cooks
    August 13, 2011 at 12:17 pm

    Always welcome a good oxtail stew. Your bento looks awesome!

  18. John
    August 14, 2011 at 11:01 pm

    Looks delicious; this seems like the perfect bento box to me. I prefer oxtail over the typical chicken or pork any day!

  19. GastroStu
    August 22, 2011 at 9:43 am

    Great recipes here. I've never cooked oxtail before, I'll have to ask my butcher.

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