Oxtail Tostadas

Oxtail Tostadas



Oxtail Tostadas

Oxtail Tostadas

Hearty, well spiced and literally fall-off-the-bone tender, this recipe for cola de res al mole is pure Mexican comfort food. If you've never had oxtail, you've been missing out on a super-flavorful and tender cut of meat! Oxtail (which is really the tail of the cow, not an actual ox), is one of those cuts of meat that is best enjoyed when slow-cooked but can be pressure cooked to save time.
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Total Time 3 hours
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Beef, Mexican, Tostada
Servings 6 Servings



Oxtail Braise:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 large or 10 small pieces oxtail
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 onions large dice
  • 3 carrots large dice
  • 1 head celery large dice
  • 15 dried guajillo chiles
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 2 sprigs fresh tarragon
  • 6 to 8 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 5 sprigs fresh Italian parsley
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 5 avocado leaves
  • 1 quart chicken bone broth
  • One 12-ounce bottle Mexican cola
  • 1 cup veal demi-glace
  • 3 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh cilantro

Quick Pickled Red Onion and Fresno:

  • 1/2 large red onion thinly sliced
  • 1 Fresno chile thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar

Avocado Crema:

  • 2 avocados very ripe, pitted
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

For Serving:

  • Canola oil for frying
  • 16 fresh corn tortillas
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/4 green cabbage thinly sliced
  • 1/4 red cabbage thinly sliced
  • 3 to 4 radishes thinly sliced
  • One 8-ounce piece Cotija cheese for grating
  • Lime wedges for serving



  • For the oxtail braise: Heat the olive oil in an 8- to 10-quart stovetop pressure cooker. Meanwhile, sprinkle the oxtails generously with salt and pepper and add to the oil. Sear the oxtails on both sides, about 5 minutes per side. Add the onions, carrots, celery, guajillo chiles, garlic, tarragon, thyme, parsley, black peppercorns, avocado leaves, bone broth, Mexican cola and demi-glace. Lock on the pressure cooker lid and pressure cook at high pressure for 30 minutes. Carefully quick-release the pressure, then unlock the lid and open.
  • Place the oxtails in a shallow dish. Strain the liquid from the pressure cooker and pour into a medium saucepan. Put over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, once the oxtails are just cool enough to handle, carefully remove the meat from the bone and shred. Add the shredded oxtail to the sauce and stir to combine. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt. Just before serving, stir in the cilantro.

Pickled Onion

  • For the quick pickled red onion and Fresno: Add the red onion, Fresno and salt to a small bowl. Pour the apple cider vinegar over the top and allow to sit and quick-pickle while you get the rest of the toppings ready. Drain prior to serving.


  • For the crema: Add the avocado flesh, lime juice, sour cream, milk, salt and cilantro to a blender and blend until combined. Pour into a squeeze bottle and set aside until ready to serve.


  • Combine the green and red cabbage in a bowl and toss until just combined.


  • For serving: Preheat a fryer or a large Dutch oven filled with 3 inches of oil to 350 degrees F. Line a sheet tray with a wire rack.
  • Add the corn tortillas to the heated oil and fry until golden brown on both sides, about 1 minute per side. Drain on the wire rack. Season with salt.


  • Place the tostadas on a plate. Top with a generous amount of avocado crema, oxtail with sauce, cabbages, pickled onions and Fresno, sliced radishes and freshly grated Cotija. Serve with the lime wedges.


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