Stonham farm Wagyu beef with oxtail and barley

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Warm, rich and with a perfectly even distribution of fat, Wagyu beef is a prized variety - and its price reflects that. If you do lay your hands on some, this recipe makes the most of its incredible flavour.

Recipe by Raymond Blanc, chef patron and Gary Jones, executive head chef.

First published in 2015
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Wagyu beef fillet

Braised heart

Braised oxtail

Ravioli filling

Pasta dough

Red wine jus

Chargrilled shallots

Pickled Thai shallots

Toasted garlic

Pearl barley

Pearl barley to finish


  • Vac pac maker
  • Water bath
  • Blast chiller
  • Twine


Start with the heart. Trim any fat off and use a pair of kitchen scissors to cut off any large pieces of the connective tissue around the top of the meat
Truss the heart with twine so it is evenly shaped. Place a heavy-based pan over a medium/high heat. Brown in the vegetable oil on all sides until golden brown
  • vegetable oil
Add the onion, carrot, rosemary and beef stock. You may need a little extra water to ensure the beef is completely submerged. Bring to a boil, reduce to a gentle simmer and cook for 4 hours until tender
Lightly flour the oxtail pieces. Place a pan over a high heat and add olive oil. Once the pan is scorching hot, add the floured oxtail. Cook until evenly browned all over. Remove from the pan and place on absorbent kitchen towel
  • 500g of oxtail, cut into sections
  • plain flour for dusting
  • olive oil
Reduce the heat slightly to medium and add a dash of fresh olive oil. Add the vegetables, garlic and the thyme to the pan. Cook gently until soft and then stir through the tomato purée and the remaining flour
Cook for 5 minutes, then add the wine and allow to reduce by half. Add the beef stock and the oxtail pieces. Bring to a gentle simmer, cover and cook until very tender. This should take 3-4 hours
Once braised, remove the meat from the liquid and allow to cool. Pass the liquid through a fine sieve and then return to a pan over a high heat. Reduce until you have a gravy-like consistency. Combine 240ml of the gravy with 240g of braised oxtail, horseradish, butter and seasoning to form a moist filling for the ravioli. Allow to cool
For the pasta, combine the flour, salt and egg yolks in a bowl until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Knead to form a dough, wrap in cling film and leave to rest for 30 minutes in the refrigerator
Roll the pasta dough through a pasta machine, starting from the widest setting, and gradually going down the settings until the arrow is between 0 and 1. Repeat the rolling process on the last setting to ensure there is a consistent finish to the thickness of the dough. The pasta should be dry, but with no cracks and slightly elastic
To make the ravioli, cut your sheets of rolled pasta into 50cm lengths. Place a sheet of pasta on a lightly floured work surface and brush lightly with the egg wash. Place small teaspoons of the oxtail mixture in 2 rows with 10cm gaps between each one. There should be 8 balls of oxtail in total on the sheet of pasta
  • 1 egg, for egg wash
Take another sheet of pasta and gently cover the oxtail balls. Stretch the dough over to meet the edges of the bottom pasta sheet and press gently around each ball to form a dome
Using a 7cm pastry cutter, cut out the raviolis around the oxtail filling. Pick each ravioli up individually and using your thumb and forefinger, squeeze out any air and seal the edges. Store on a tray lined with a clean tea towel. Repeat the process until all of the mix is enclosed
For the red wine jus, lightly colour the sliced shallots in 50g butter. Add the 390g of sliced mushrooms and continue to colour until golden, do not over-caramelise. Combine both stocks, the caramelised mushrooms, shallots and the red wine
Bring to the boil, skim, and cook for 20 minutes. Skim constantly to remove any scum that rises to the surface. Pass through a fine strainer and reduce quickly to make a jus. To retain freshness and flavour during reduction process, add the 90g of fresh mushrooms, vinegar and cream. Adjust the seasoning, add the tarragon and chives, pass again through the fine strainer and set aside
For the chargrilled shallots, place them in a sous-vide bag with oil, salt, pepper, garlic and thyme and cook for approximately 25 minutes at 100˚C steam setting. Allow to cool, remove from the bag and drain on absorbent kitchen towel. Coat with a little oil and chargrill on one side before serving
For the pickled Thai shallots, blanch the shallots in boiling water in one pan until two thirds cooked, approximately 3-4 minutes. Combine the remaining ingredients in a second pan and bring to the boil. Add the shallots from the first pan into the second and simmer for 2 minutes until tender, but still with a little bite
Remove from the heat and cool in a blast chiller. Trim the bases to enable them to stand upright on the plate and reduce a little of the cooking liqour to glaze
For the crispy garlic, cut the garlic on a mandolin into 1mm thick slices. Warm the olive oil and add the garlic, cook until golden brown. Remove from the oil immediately and drain on absorbent kitchen towel
To cook the pearl barley, sweat the onions in the butter until tender in a heavy-based saucepan. Add the celery and cook for a further 2 minutes. Add the barley and sugar and cook for a further 2 minutes
Next, add the stock and bouquet garni, cover with greaseproof paper and cook for approximately 22 minutes at 180˚C/gas mark 4 in the oven. Season to taste and infuse with rosemary
For the wagyu fillet, generously season the steak with salt. Heat a cast iron pan until extremely hot and then remove from the heat. Preheat the oven to 200˚C/gas mark 6. Add a little vegetable oil to the pan and then lay down the steaks
To cook further, place in the oven for the desired cooking time - 1 minute for medium rare (increase this number by 2 minute increments for medium, medium-well and well-done finishes). Remove the steaks from the oven and set aside to rest for 4 minutes
Warm the heart in chicken stock, add the barley and warm gently. Add the cream and horseradish and finish with some chopped chives
Before serving, cook the ravioli in boiling water for 2 minutes
Arrange the pearl barely in the middle of each plate, followed by both shallots, ravioli and finally the beef. Spoon over the warm red wine jus and finish with some toasted garlic
First published in 2015

Gary Jones led the kitchen at Raymond Blanc's Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons from 1999 to 2022.

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