Delta-8 THC has been popping up on the scene like crazy lately! If you haven’t heard about it, or any of its controversies, you will now.  It’s popularity has exploded just in the last year because of its similarities to delta-9 THC (most commonly known weed), but it’s technically considered federally legal.

Legally, Delta-8 lies in this gray area, which is why states who have yet to legalize marijuana are able to sell delta-8 THC products making it more accessible to those people who really need it’s relieving effects. It also has opened doors for the illicit market to sell some wack shit. I’m here to give you the straight facts, Greenies!

What is delta-8 THC?

Before we get into the nitty gritty of why delta-8 THC has had such a come up in the past year or so, it’s important to know what in the hell it is! I like to consider delta-8 a little cousin of delta-9, which is the main compound in cannabis that gets you high. Delta-9 THC is just the fancy, scientific name for regular ass weed. 

Just like delta-9, delta-8 binds to the body’s endocannabinoid system – which is what makes you feel high. The only difference is that it binds in a different way since molecularly they’re different compounds. Because of this, the ‘high’ you experience is much less potent, but you can still feel those euphoric, sedative, and symptom relieving effects! At least, that’s what we know so far since there hasn’t been much research done on delta-8.

What’s the story behind delta-8 THC?

The reason why delta-8 THC has become somewhat controversial is because of the legalities and lack of regulation. Since delta-8 can be extracted from hemp, and hemp can be legally grown and used for extractions throughout the U.S. (thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill), that technically makes it legal. So, in some states where cannabis isn’t legal to consume yet, they’re actually able to sell delta-8 products as it’s derived from hemp (CBD). Because of the strong similarities in effects between delta-8 and regular delta-9 THC, she’s taken off! 

People that normally aren’t able to access cannabis products, and their healing effects, now have access to something that’s strikingly similar. In fact, since delta-8’s effects are much more mellow than regular THC, it’s piqued a lot of peoples’ interests. Of course, this can be a good thing considering it has the potential to help more people find relief from their ailments, but it also opens doors for unregulated and unsafe products to hit the market.        

Is delta-8 safe to consume?

When it comes to the safety of consuming delta-8 THC products, it’s really about where you get it from. At the very core, the compound itself is, of course, safe to consume. It’s natural and comes from our beloved hemp plant, you can’t go wrong! But, just like how a shady black market type deal was formed when states started legalizing cannabis, the same is happening with delta-8. 

Experts say that the main safety risk truly lies within untested, unlicensed delta-8 THC products purchased on the unregulated market. Makes sense right? What these places do is pollute the products with potentially poisonous contaminates like lead, arsenic, metals, etc. and this has led to a handful of hospitalizations! As a result, some states are already cracking the whip and pushing to highly regulate and even ban delta-8 THC. 

Bottom line Greenies: You have to be smart with where you’re getting your product. You know me, I don’t mess around. So, any of my cannabis or delta-8 goodies are 100% safe to consume. 

Where to purchase delta-8 THC

While reading about this may seem a little scary, there is nothing wrong with delta-8! It’s still natural and provides very similar, healing effects that cannabis does. Yes, it’s a compound that doesn’t have as much research behind it, but you just need to get it from a trustworthy source. Typically there are three different options you can choose from when you’re looking to get your hands on delta-8 THC:

  1. Online: You can easily purchase delta-8 products online, but there’s typically no way to know what’s actually in them. It’s not uncommon to come across untested and contaminated products going this route. 
  2. Dispensaries: All state-licensed cannabis stores have to put their products through strict, state-mandated testing for purity and potency. Basically, when the label says there’s a certain amount of delta-8 THC in that specific product, that’s what you’re gonna get. But, unfortunately, most delta-8 products are sold outside of these licensed dispensaries. 
  3. Retail stores: These retail shops are where most of the risks lie. They’re unlicensed and completely unregulated. They could be selling pure crap! Like when purchasing online, there’s no way to know that what’s actually on the label is what is in the product itself. These types of stores are usually places like gas stations and smoke shops. Stay away, Greenies!

Your best bet for delta-8 THC

At the end of the day, your best bet for giving delta-8 THC a try is to purchase it from a trustworthy source. If you get bad vibes from a specific place, trust your gut! For states where cannabis is legal, go to a licensed dispensary and check out their delta-8 selection. If cannabis isn’t legal where you are, just be very cautious about your choices. 

The good news is that I make delta-8 edibles myself and you know I do it RIGHT. I source my delta-8 from reliable sources, such as Third Day Collective and Extract Labs in Colorado, that I trust. I also have the COA (Certificate of Analysis) for my delta-8 products.  

It is a matter of the integrity and trust that my customers give me that makes me go that extra mile. I want all my peeps to not only feel safe to consume my products but also to know what is going into their bodies. We should all be able to make an informed and educated decision about anything that we consume that runs the gamut from fruits and veggies to our cannabis.

Peep my delta-8 selection

There are absolutely no secrets here, y’all know edibles are my jam! That’s my specialty. Why? Because food has always been my first love. As a bonafide phat gurl, finding ways to marry cannabis and food together in perfect unison has been quite the journey; especially when it comes to taste! Learning how to make edibles taste better took a lot of trial and error, but ya girl has figured it out — and now I’m sharing the goods with you so you can do the same. 

But first, why edibles?

Real quick though, before I share my top tips on how to make edibles taste better, I think that ya’ll need to know why edibles are so incredibly beneficial to us. For anyone that’s newer to cannabis consumption, you can intake cannabis in a variety of different ways – smoking, vaping, eating (edibles), topical application, etc. But, ingesting cannabis by way of edibles is one of the best ways you can experience its effects, here’s just a few reasons why:

  1. Increased relaxation and overall relief– Since THC is introduced through your digestive tract, you can experience a more potent and sedative effect. 
  2. The effects last longer– Thanks to the gradual onset of THC reaching your brain, the effects of edibles can last as long as 6 to 8 hours based on the dose, potency, body weight, etc. That just means more time to enjoy the ride. 
  3. Better for your lungs– Edibles are a lot easier on the lungs since you’re not inhaling anything. That’s a big win for your respiratory health over time. 

Alright Greenies, with those benefits in your back pocket, let’s get into my tips on how to make edibles taste better!

Tip #1: Clean your weed.

I know this may sound counterproductive, but it is a real thing. You gotta clean your flower! I promise you will experience a much better taste with your edibles if you clean your cannabis before adding it to your medium (butter, oil, or grain alcohol). When you see really, really green-colored butter, oil or tincture, that does not denote potency. That color is mostly the chlorophyll found naturally in the plant and *gasp* dirt and other impurities. You don’t want that shit in your treats!

Jeff The 420 Chef has a killer method for cleaning his cannabis before he cooks with it called the ‘Freeleaf’ method and I’ve used it in the past (and hella approve). Follow the steps he outlines and you’ll have some bomb-ass tasting edibles. Think about it like this, just like we clean our fruits and veggies, we can clean our weed so we don’t have any other impurities that will go into our bodies when we infuse our mediums.

Oh, and don’t worry, THC is not naturally water-soluble, so you won’t lose any potency! 

Tip #2: Don’t grind your weed finely. 

Gone are the days of grinding up our flower before infusing it into our mediums. When you grind up your weed (and especially if you don’t clean your weed), you release more chlorophyll and distribute more impurities over the surface of whatever you’re infusing—which can have gross flavors imparted into your medium.

Breaking up the weed by hand into uniform pieces, before decarbing, is sufficient enough to get the heat evenly distributed into the buds to decarb. Just make sure that everything is as uniform as possible so it all will heat and decarb evenly. Even better, get a precision heater, like the Ardent, where you don’t even have to break up the nugs! She will heat the bud to an accurate and precise temperature to decarb the flower without grinding it up. 

If you go that route, I can hook it up with a fire discount too. Just use the code ‘thegreenbaker’ to save on your purchase! Also, a little side tip—if you do grind up your weed, invest in a good french press or cheesecloth to get all those small particles out of your infusion.

Tip #3: Use distillate. 

I would say this tip is moreso for cannabis patients in states where consumption isn’t recreationally legal yet since they already have access to distillate. If you’re not familiar with what distillate is, it’s basically a cannabis extract where THC is completely taken out of the flower and everything else has been stripped away as well (the chlorophyll, terpenes, and flavonoids, which isn’t always a good thing). This creates a clear, thick, and viscous substance of pure full-blown THC. 

That can then be put into edible recipes for a potent and clean-tasting edible. If that’s your thing, go for it. I’m a true believer and advocate for using the whole flower in infusions, but using distillate in edibles is a very clean-tasting method. You just will be missing out all the wonderful entourage effects of the whole flower infusions, like what I make! 

Tip #4: Dose accordingly. 

If you really want to know how to make edibles taste better, you need to dose accordingly. Sometimes, we overdo how much of an infusion we use. And sometimes not using as much can create a better-tasting edible since you are not using as much of that leafy green, GREEN medium. So, my recommendation is to test your mediums using a tCheck home cannabis potency testing device (use my code ‘thegreenbaker’ for some savings!). Instead of using ALL that cannabutter, you can consider doing a mix of half-infused/half non-infused to cut back on that weed-y flavor. 

While we’re on the topic of dosing, I definitely want to address the safety aspect in addition to the effects on taste. It’s a good idea to do a little research on what different dosing levels look like with edibles as far as what kind of experience to expect. As a good starting point, Leafly has a legit dosing chart that helps to shed some light. 

Finally, enjoy edibles that have great taste.  

Think you know how to make edibles taste better now? Damn straight Greenies! I know you can make edibles right in your own kitchen, but why take the time when The Green Baker can do it for you? With my 20+ years of culinary experience, I know exactly what it takes to cook up the most delicious edibles that have just the right dose to fit your individual needs. Not to toot my own horn or anything, but I make some of the fudgiest, dark chocolate-infused brownies that are to die for. 

Get your hands on some edibles

It’s Pride Month Greenies!! Not gonna lie, this month is one of my all-time faves. I love seeing my babies out there rockin’ their shit like no one’s business. As a loud and proud queer myself, this month means so much more than just block parties, drag shows, and rainbow flags. 

For Pride Month, I want to share some incredible LGBTQ+ cannabis stories from amazing souls I had the pleasure of connecting with. But first, let me drop some knowledge bombs on you real quick on Pride history.

How Pride Month all began. 

Don’t get me wrong, Pride Month is always a damn good time, but I really do think it’s important to understand the history. The progression we’ve made didn’t come easy:

  • In 1969 police raided a gay club in NY called the Stonewall Inn, which started the infamous Stonewall Riots
  • Bad bitch Marsha P. Johnson – a black, trans, bisexual woman – led the movement over the span of 6 tireless days demanding that places be established where the LGBTQ+ community could go and be open about their sexual orientation without fear of arrest 
  • Following the protests, Gay Pride Week was born when ‘The Mother of Pride’ Brenda Howard made it come to fruition 
  • The legendary as hell New York City Pride March also came to life around this time and jump started similar parades and marches all across the world

Cannabis played a part too! 

This may or may not come as a surprise, but cannabis is synonymous with the LGBTQ+ community! Matter of fact, the Queer protests actually helped pave the way for cannabis legalization. Cannabis daddy/activist Dennis Peron, AKA the ‘Father of Medical Marijuana’, co-wrote Prop 215 (which was aimed at allowing the use of medical marijuana in California), undeniably linking the queer community and the cannabis industry seamlessly. 

Big ups to Dennis, for real. You guys all know how much cannabis has changed my life, and I’m not the only one in the LGBTQ+ community who’s experienced that! So, to celebrate Pride Month, I talked to real people about their cannabis journeys – and it was EVERYTHING!

1. Meet Kylee Morris, LGBTQ+ cannabis lover from Mesa, AZ

How old are you and how do you identify? 

I’m 27 years old and I identify as human, she/her. 

Tell me a little bit about you! What are your interests, what do you do for work, what are you passionate about, etc.

I am a Software Developer and am currently working as an Email Developer for a digital agency. My passions include, but are not limited to: spending time with my amazing girlfriend and animals (which include 3 eccentric cats, 1 special dog, 3 chickens, 1 rooster, and a giant tortoise!). I love tending to nature and existing in nature. Music! Shows! Festivals!

Tell me about your relationship with cannabis! When did you start using cannabis and why? How do you typically use cannabis? What’s your favorite thing about it?

My relationship with cannabis was a rocky one in the beginning. I carried a lot of shame and trauma as a result of what I was taught. I started smoking consistently and incorporating the beautiful plant into my daily routine when I was 25. 

It was at the same time that I started to really allow myself to be free– free of self-hatred and free of the shame that I was taught, and the freedom to allow myself to have the things I want in life. I had just come out to my family and friends and I wasn’t going to set up rules that I didn’t care for. Fuck that. So that’s when my love for cannabis took off. I love the flower– the smell, the taste, and the texture all in a nice joint. Yes, please. And you get kief at the end; it’s the gift that keeps on giving!

How has cannabis affected your life? Did it help you through any struggles or challenges related to coming out, going through your transition, etc.?

My coming out and my cannabis journey go hand-in-hand. I don’t know being gay without being high. Just kidding! I have not been happier in my life since choosing to use cannabis and loving myself completely. And choosing to smoke and allowing myself to do what I wish has been the most liberating experience. 

I am a liberated Human. I thank cannabis so much for that, she has been there for hard moments and the happy TURNT moments! If I could shake Mary Jane’s hand personally, I would. And give her a big hug and thank her. It’s changed my life.

In celebration of Pride Month, what’s one piece of advice or some words of wisdom you’d like to give to anyone who may be struggling?

Love yourself and allow yourself to be loved. Allow yourself to be YOU! And if that doesn’t work, roll a joint, draw a picture, write a poem or just sit in grass or under a tree and let yourself just exist on this huge ass rock! Peace and love. 

Follow Kylee on Instagram here

2. Meet Brit Francis, LGBTQ+ cannabis lover from Delray Beach, FL 

How old are you and how do you identify? 

I’m 34 years old and I identify as lesbian, she/her.

Tell me a little bit about you! What are your interests, what do you do for work, what are you passionate about, etc.

Currently, I work as a Health and Nutrition Coach in a Functional Medicine Clinic. In addition, I am also the lead Cannabis Educator at our practice. 

I have always been passionate about fitness, health, and helping others improve their lives with natural interventions like cannabis.  Outside of work, my interests include training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, snorkeling, and being a new mom!

Tell me about your relationship with cannabis! When did you start using cannabis and why? How do you typically use cannabis? What’s your favorite thing about it?

My professional background is in Functional Medicine. This model of healthcare aims to identify, treat, and prevent the root cause of disease and chronic illness. In order to achieve this, a combination of nutrition, exercise, lifestyle modifications, and cannabis is used. 

After successfully helping my own health with cannabis and watching my patients experience the same success, I quickly realized the powerful healing properties these plants have. From here, I knew I had a duty to continue expanding and sharing my knowledge of cannabis therapeutics.  

How has cannabis affected your life? Did it help you through any struggles or challenges related to coming out, going through your transition, etc.?

Cannabis has brought much clarity, peace, and balance to my life. For many people in the LGBTQIA+ community, early child and adulthood experiences as they relate to our gender and/or sexuality are often linked to trauma. I was no exception. 

Talking about mental health remains a stigma in American culture, but that is changing. I believe that cannabis has contributed to this shift in perspective. Using cannabis has been an integral component of my mental health journey and I am grateful every day for plant-based medicine.  

In celebration of Pride Month, what’s one piece of advice or some words of wisdom you’d like to give to anyone who may be struggling?

The advice I would share with anyone who may be struggling is that you are not alone. There are so many people in your community who appreciate and love you for the genuine, unique, and special person you are.

Follow Brit on Instagram here

3. Meet Shelby Anderson, LGBTQ+ cannabis lover from Tucson, AZ 

How old are you and how do you identify? 

I’m 29 years old and I identify as Big ol’ Lesbian. 

Tell me a little bit about you! What are your interests, what do you do for work, what are you passionate about, etc.

I’m currently working at Whole Foods, making wholesome, healthy meals for the public. I enjoy making people and those close to me laugh and smile. As I begin to enter into the next chapter of adulthood; my thirties, YIKES! I’m realizing that doing what you LOVE and making money while doing that, is the ultimate goal. 

Family Counseling and Youth Development is where my heart is at. Being a voice, for the kids who feel like they have lost theirs, is my calling. I want to be a change in the way our youth take on the world’s challenges mentally, emotionally, and physically so we don’t have that revolving door of crime, self-harm, and all the other results of just lost children that grow up to be lost adults.

Tell me about your relationship with cannabis! When did you start using cannabis and why? How do you typically use cannabis? What’s your favorite thing about it?

I started diving into the world of cannabis at 18 when my parents decided to separate after 20 years of marriage. After learning how to use cannabis to make me feel less anxious and relaxed, I loved it! I use cannabis daily, usually throughout the day. 

I just simply enjoy how it allows me to slow down overthinking and allow myself to focus on relieving my anxiety and harmful thoughts, not adding to it by numbing myself with everything possible. I absolutely love the wide varieties of cannabis, and how there are so many levels of cannabis, and how we can heal our bodies with it.  

How has cannabis affected your life? Did it help you through any struggles or challenges related to coming out, going through your transition, etc.?

Cannabis has deeply impacted my life for the positive; once I gained enough self-control in a monetary sense and stopped abusing the powers of cannabis. Once I became accountable for my own actions, cannabis has been a game-changer. I came out between the ages of 18-20. I didn’t tell everybody right away, so it was a slower process than it felt like. When I could feel the crippling anxiety when I thought someone even mentioned the word ‘gay’ or ‘lesbian’ around me and they ‘figured me out’, cannabis saved me. 

It allowed me to feel those confusing feelings and feel comfortable in my own skin. It allowed me to think through those persistent thoughts in my head of being gay, of feeling all alone in my family because I was the only ‘gay’ cousin, sister, and daughter. 

Fast forward almost a decade later and I LOVE the fact that I’m the Stoner Lesbian of the fam! Cannabis has contributed to the mental and emotional rebirth that has taken place over the past ten years, especially anxiety. Being able to be completely honest and open to the world and to yourself of who you are, is just simply beautiful.  

In celebration of Pride Month, what’s one piece of advice or some words of wisdom you’d like to give to anyone who may be struggling?

To all my young LGBTQ+ family, LOVE YOURSELF. Do not be afraid to live your true and authentic self, whenever YOU are ready. Not when society pressures you or when family starts to question or wonder, it’s on YOUR time. Believe me when I say, it was the scariest and hardest part of my story, but it’s MY story and you get to write your OWN. 

My grandfather’s last words to me were, “Sweetie, Shelby, are you happy?? Are you living a life that you would be PROUD of”? Holding back tears to show him how strong I was in that moment, I said, “Yeah Grandpa, I can finally say that I am.” He smiled back and said “Well then, that’s all that matters sweetie”.

Follow Shelby on Instagram here.

4. Meet Erica DeLoach, LGBTQ+ cannabis lover from Chicago, IL 

How old are you and how do you identify? 

I’m 32 years old and I identify as Pansexual non-binary femme (they/she)

Tell me a little bit about you! What are your interests, what do you do for work, what are you passionate about, etc.

I’m a disabled witch of many trades! I run my own business called Vishuddha Vision. I’m a cannabis educator & consultant, certified massage therapist and TCM bodyworker, E-RYT 200, certified trauma-informed yoga teacher and vocal yoga teacher, voice coach, clinical herbalist, social media manager, writer, content creator, performing artist, dramaturg, and intuitive empath.

I’m passionate about helping guide folks on their healing/plant medicine journeys, channel their truth, and create safe, decolonized spaces for vulnerable self-expression. I offer herbal & health consults, tarot readings, custom blogs, and share tools for fearless communication, trauma-informed recovery, chronic illness management, nervous system regulation, sensual reclamation, pleasure embodiment, somatic work, and vibrational healing.

Tell me about your relationship with cannabis! When did you start using cannabis and why? How do you typically use cannabis? What’s your favorite thing about it?

Cannabis saved my life and continues to daily! I’m a medical cannabis patient who lives with endometriosis, a hyperthyroid nodule, celiac disease, and other chronic health conditions. I also deal with anxiety, depression, CPTSD, & OCD. I first tried it in undergrad as “character research” for a show I was in (Hair) but was astounded by how much it helped me physically, mentally, & spiritually. As legalities opened up more, I’ve been able to pinpoint what terpenes & cannabinoid ratios are best for me.

I love all consumption methods! I love the nuanced variety of flower (preferring a bong when smoking) and especially tinctures and RSO. I use cannabis medicinally, creatively, and for pleasure. I feel all cannabis use – whether ‘recreational’ or medicinal – is valid and needs to be destigmatized.

How has cannabis affected your life? Did it help you through any struggles or challenges related to coming out, going through your transition, etc.?

Cannabis helps me function and listen to my body’s needs, instead of falling into a grind culture that treats our bodies like machines. I never officially came out. I hope as our society evolves, we won’t feel the need to come out due to binary/heteronormative assumptions of queer not being the norm. Or hide who we are due to fear and it being unsafe.

Cannabis definitely helped me fully embrace my queer identity, releasing conditioned beliefs I was taught growing up about my queerness being wrong and shameful. It helped calm the triggered anxiety/past trauma and open my mind when I first began exploring my sexual identity/gender expression. I’m fortunate now to be in a safe environment with those who accept me, but that hasn’t always been the case. 

In celebration of Pride Month, what’s one piece of advice or some words of wisdom you’d like to give to anyone who may be struggling?

Who you are, who you love, and what brings you pleasure is nothing to be ashamed of. Your worth is not based on what you do, your “productivity”, or colonized heteronormative expectations. You’re worthy because you exist. You deserve to feel good and be loved.

Rest often, do what brings joy, and ask for help when needed. To ask for support is strength. You aren’t alone. If you need a safe space or person, please reach out! You deserve to feel safe and seen. Who we are is constantly expanding (the rainbow has colors we can’t even see!). You are SO beautiful.

Follow Erica on Instagram here.

+1 Meet Angie Willoughby (me!), LGBTQ+ cannabis lover from West Palm Beach, FL 

How old are you and how do you identify? 

I’m 40 years old and I identify as Queer, homoflexible.

Tell me a little bit about you! What are your interests, what do you do for work, what are you passionate about, etc.

I’m The Green Baker – passionate about cannabis, education, and advocacy. I’m a mom, partner, Gemini witch (lol), sarcastic, and honest. Looking to become the Oprah of cannabis!

Tell me about your relationship with cannabis! When did you start using cannabis and why? How do you typically use cannabis? What’s your favorite thing about it?

I started using in my late to early young adulthood, mostly recreational and occasionally. My relationship with cannabis has definitely evolved as I have grown from a young adult to a mother, wife, and into my own adulthood. 

There is so much to love about this plant– from its communal and unifying properties to the individual benefits to each person’s needs. I could list a myriad of things that I love about cannabis, but personally, it has helped me deal with my own mental health and continues to help me be the very best version of myself. 

How has cannabis affected your life? Did it help you through any struggles or challenges related to coming out, going through your transition, etc.?

I have had a hard time figuring out who I was and where I fit in when it came to my queerness. I didn’t feel ‘gay’ enough or ‘straight’ enough. I also have issues with racial intersectionality within the gay community. 

Cannabis helped me to be honest with myself about what I wanted and needed. And to see that it doesn’t matter what labels we adhere to– as long as I had a strong sense of who I was, that was all that mattered. The openness and care that is found within the gay and also cannabis communities were so instrumental in me feeling like a part of something.  

In celebration of Pride Month, what’s one piece of advice or some words of wisdom you’d like to give to anyone who may be struggling?

Be true to you, even if you aren’t sure what that is. Surround yourself with people who show you grace, honesty, and joy so you can savor the journey of becoming whoever you wish to be.

Follow Angie on Instagram here.

The Green Baker’s got you for Pride celebrations 

I can’t even begin to describe to you guys how cool it was to be able to connect with the four other beautiful souls on a deeper level. Hearing their own personal experiences with cannabis only solidifies the fact that this plant is pure magic. It changes lives for the better – and that’s a fact baby! 

I hope you’re as excited for Pride Month this year as I am– it’s gonna be LIT. After a year of dark clouds with quarantine, loss, grief, and anxiety it’s nice to see a glimpse of that beautiful PRIDE rainbow.  Whatever your celebrations maybe, you know The Green Baker’s got you with the cannabis goodies! I’ve been busy in the kitchen whipping up some bomb-ass edibles lately, like these CBD and THC-infused cakes everyone’s been going crazy about at our local Florida markets. 

Hit me up to get the latest menu and pricing Greenies! HAPPY PRIDE ya’ll!

Get your cannabis goodies

Rich and juicy meaty and satisfying, oxtails are a Jamaican staple and infusing it is inspired by Des Farquharson

Oxtail is a peculiar and wonderful piece of meat. It’s literally the tail of the steer, which means it’s thick at one end and skinny at the other, and it’s sold cut into sections, which means you’ll get a few big meaty pieces and a few really little ones.

The oxtail is full of all kinds of cartilage and connective tissue, which means it needs to be cooked slowly for a long time using moist heat; braising, in this case.

Fortunately, braising melts away all those sinewy bits and turns them into gelatin, so you can use the cooking liquid to make a really rich and delicious sauce. And the meat itself is absolutely succulent.


Steps to Make It

  1. Preheat your oven to 300 F / 150 C. Dry the oxtails well with paper towels. This will help you get a nice brown color when you sear them.
  2. In a heavy, cast-iron Dutch oven or brazier, heat the oil over high heat, then add the oxtails and sear them thoroughly, using a pair of tongs to turn them. When you’ve developed a nice brown crust on all sides, remove the oxtail from the pan and set aside.
  3. Add the carrots, onions and garlic to pot and cook for 5 minutes or so, or until the onion is slightly translucent.
  4. Add the wine and use a wooden spoon or heat-proof spatula to loosen all the bits from the bottom of the pan.
  5. Now return the oxtails to the pot along with the stock, bay leaves, rosemary, peppercorns, and tomato paste. Heat on the stovetop until the liquid comes to a boil, then cover with a tight-fitting lid and transfer the whole thing to the oven.
  6. Leave the oxtail in the oven for three hours. You don’t need to touch it at all during this time, but you can use some of that time to prepare some creamy polenta or mashed potatoes.
  7. After three hours, remove the pot from the oven and let the meat cool in the braising liquid while you make the sauce. Add the butter beans
  8. Ladle out around two cups of the braising liquid and pour it through a mesh strainer. Skim off any fat from the top.
  9. Heat the butter in a separate saucepan, then gradually stir in the flour until paste forms. Heat for a few minutes, stirring until the paste (called a roux) is a light brown color.
  10. Now whisk the hot liquid into the roux, a little at a time. Simmer the sauce for about 15 minutes, then strain it through a fine-mesh strainer and season to taste with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve the oxtail over some polenta or mashed potatoes, and a generous portion of sauce.