Bwell Oxtail Dombolo

In celebration of Mandela day, we are making some of uTata Mandela’s favourite meals. Among many of his favourite dishes one that we had to try was Oxtail Dombolo

Serves: 6
Time: 1 Hour 30 minutes
Recipe by: Thando Manyoni


For the oxtail:
4 tbsp B-well Canola and Olive Blended Oil
2.5kg Oxtail
½ a handful fresh thyme
4 sprigs fresh Rosemary
1 onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
4 large carrots, sliced
2 celery stalks, sliced
4 dried bay leaves
2 Tbsp curry powder
2 tbsp flour
2 cans chopped tomatoes
½ cup non-alcoholic red wine
1L beef stock

For the dombolo
1 Tbsp dried yeast
1 Tbsp sugar
250g Flour
½ – 1 cup warm water
1 tsp salt


Preheat the oven to 180C and prepare a roasting tray.
Start with the dombolo; sift together the dry ingredients in a large. Gradually add the warm water and mixing as you go. Knead until a ball of dough forms, it is soft dough. Add more water if needed. Knead for 10 minutes. Transfer the dough to an oil bowl and allow to proof until doubled in size.
Place the oxtail on the roasting tray, drizzle 2 tbsp of oil, add the rosemary and thyme, and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat the meat. Place the oxtail in the oven for 20 minutes or until browned and the fat is golden.
Meanwhile, drizzle the remaining oil in a pressure cooker and sweat the onions and garlic. Add the carrots, celery and bay leaves and gently cook for 10 minutes. Adding water as needed. Add the curry powder, flour, tomatoes, wine and beef stock to the vegetables. Remove the oxtail from the oven and add it to the pot along with all the roasting juices and bring to a boil. Cover the pressure cook with a lid and set to cook for 45 minutes.
Once the dombolo is ready. Bring the oxtail to a gentle simmer. Knockdown the dough, then roll ito 6 balls. Place the dombolo directly on the simmering stew. Cover with a lid and simmer gently for 20 minutes without lifting the lid. Remove the lid and turn over the dombolo and steam for a further 10 minutes with the lid on. The dombolo is ready when a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Serve immediately.

Chefs Tip:

  • You can substitute the non-alcoholic red wine with red wine vinegar or even alcoholic red wine
  • When cooking the dombolo it is important not to lift the lid because this will affect the rise of the bread as dombolo cooks with the help of steam.

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