Braised Oxtail Ragu and Breadfruit Pappardelle

Richly sauced bourbon braised oxtails served over a slightly sweet breadfruit pappardelle.

Breadfruit is a fruit produced from a tree similar to jackfruit. It has a rough green outer skin and a large seed in the middle. Even though it is technically a fruit, breadfruit is only slightly sweet and very starchy. It is often cooked much like you would cook potatoes, fried into chips or mashed with cream and butter. For this recipe, I am using it to make a beautiful pappardelle. But, breadfruit is not a normal grocery store item. Homemade or store-bought pappardelle will be just as delicious in this dish.

I used overripe breadfruit for this recipe, meaning the flesh was completely soft. I removed the skin, the seed, and the tough part of the flesh next to the seed. The flesh was soft enough for me to mash it by hand, but this could be done in a food processor. I mixed the breadfruit with the rest of my ingredients like a regular pasta dough. This dough is wetter than a normal dough. Because of this, I used a generous amount of the semolina/flour mixture when rolling out and cutting the pasta. I also hung the pasta until it was time to cook it to keep it from sticking together.

The ragu for this pasta is made by braising oxtails and blending the braising liquid to make a rich meat sauce. Serve the sauce over the homemade pasta, and garnish with a little parmesan cheese.

Braised Oxtails Ragu and Breadfruit Pappardelle

Course Dinner, Main Course, pasta
Total Time 4 hours
Servings 4


Braised Oxtails

  • oxtails 3 large 3 small
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 cup tomato diced
  • 2 carrots chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 tsp chili flake
  • 1 pinch cloves
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 cup bourbon
  • 8 cups water divided
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 5 sprigs thyme
  • 1/2 tsp peppercorn
  • 1/2 tsp coriander seed
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1/2 cup parmesan shaved

Breadfruit Pappardelle

  • 2 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 cup breadfruit overripe and mashed
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • semolina as needed
  • flour as needed
  • 4 tbsp melted butter


Braised Oxtails

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Season the oxtails with salt and pepper. Heat oil in an oven safe braising dish (Dutch oven) over medium high heat. When it shimmer add the oxtails and brown on all sides.
  • Make a sachet with thyme, bay leaf, peppercorns, and coriander. Remove the oxtails from the pan and add the onion, garlic, and carrot. When the vegetables have some color add the tomatoes and bourbon. Add 4 cups of water, sachet, and other spices. Add the oxtails back to the pan and bring to a simmer.
  • Cover and place in the oven for 3 hours or until the meat is fall off the bone tender. Remove the oxtails from the pan. Skim off all the fat. Add the other 4 cups of water, scrapping the fond from the bottom and sides of the pan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat.
  • Remove the oxtail meat from the bones and shred. Add the bones to the cooking liquid and reduce by 1/2. Remove the bones and sachet. Blend the liquid until smooth. There should be 2 1/2-3 cups of sauce. Add the meat to the sauce and keep warm while cooking the pasta.

Breadfruit Pappardelle

  • In a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment combine flour, salt, breadfruit and egg. After the dough comes together mix for another 10 minutes. Cover and allow to rest 10 minutes.
  • Make a 50/50 mix of semolina and flour. Divide the dough into four portions. Roll and cut the dough one piece at a time, keeping the other dough covered. Roll the dough out by hand or with a pasta machine. Dust the dough with the flour/semolina mixture to keep from sticking. The dough should be no thicker than 1/8 of an inch. Cut the dough sheets into 3/4 inch strips and hang to dry while working the rest of the dough.
  • Bring a large pot with salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta 3-5 minutes. Mix the cooked pasta with the melted butter and divide between 4 bowls. Spoon the oxtail sauce over the pasta and garnish with parmesan cheese.

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