The 1975 edition of The Joy of Cooking is a lot more fun to read than the 1997 revision. Granted it has recipes for things that would never darken the door of the contemporary cook's kitchen, like sea turtle, bear, opossum and raccoon, but that's what makes it exciting reading!
In case you ever need to fix a bear, be sure you remove all of the fat promptly because it turns rancid very quickly. Then you can marinade it for 24 hours and prepare as you would a beef pot roast. Who knew?
Well, I've not been bear hunting recently but I did decide to consult the 1975 hardback of Joy for an oxtail soup recipe after spying some oxtail in the butcher counter at Compare Supermarket. Oxtail, by the way, is a lovely and impressive description for cow's tail that's been sectioned at the joints with a surprising amount of meat attached.
Next time I will double this recipe because it made only about 3 large bowls of soup that I've had as main course for the past three meals.
Here is the recipe from 1975 ed. Joy of Cooking, page 154 (I don't know what page in the 1997 ed.):
2lbs of oxtail
1/2 c sliced onions
2 T butter
8 c water
1 1/2 t salt
Brown the oxtail and onions in the butter. Then add the water, peppercorns and salt. Simmer for 4 1/2 hours.
Add to the oxtail broth:
1/4 c. diced carrots
1/2 c. diced celery
1 bay leaf
1/4 c. chopped parsley
1/2 c. canned diced tomatoes
1/4 c. barley
1 t. dried thyme, basil or marjoram (I like thyme)
Cook for 30 minutes. Chill overnight and degrease. When ready to serve, warm the soup up and slowly add a brown roux of 1 T flour cooked with 2 T butter until dark golden in color. Correct the seasonings of salt and pepper.
If desired, add 1/4 c. sherry to soup before serving.