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how to cook oxtail stew with okra

Egyptian Bamia (Okra Stew)

  • Author: Lily
  • Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
  • Yield: 6
  • Diet: Gluten Free


This traditional Egyptian bamia recipe is made with oxtail, homemade tomato sauce, and okra.



Egyptian Magic Red Sauce (Homemade Tomato Sauce)

  • 9 Medium Tomatoes
  • 3 Medium Onions
  • 9 Garlic Cloves
  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Sugar
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste

For the Oxtail

  • 2 lbs (1 kg) Oxtail
  • 1.5 quarts (1.5 liters) of Water
  • 1 Medium Onion
  • 8 Cardamom Pods
  • 2 Tsp Salt
  • 1 Tsp Black Pepper
  • 2 Bay Leaves

Oxtail Stew

  • Egyptian Magic Red Sauce
  • Cooked Oxtail
  • Frozen or Fresh Okra (see notes)
  • 1 lime


Cook the Oxtail

  1. In a large pot, add the oxtail, salt, pepper, water, bay leaves, and cardamom pods.
  2. Bring to a boil. Reduce to medium-high heat and cover. Cook for about 1.5 hours monitoring every 20 minutes to make sure the water isn't low. Refill the water as necessary (I add about 2 to 3 cups throughout the process of cooking).
  3. Once the oxtail is starting to get tender, remove it from the heat. Strain the broth from the oxtail. Set the broth aside (this can be used for soup or be added to cook the rice).

Make the Egyptian Red Sauce

  1. Peel and quarter onions. Peel garlic. Add to a food processor and blend on high. Set aside.
  2. Quarter tomatoes. Add to a blender. Blend on high. Strain tomatoes. Set aside.
  3. In a large stovetop pot on medium-high heat, add olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add the onion and garlic mixture. Fry the onions and garlic for about 5 minutes or until they start to change color. 
  4. Add the strained tomato puree, sugar, salt, and pepper. Cover the pot, reduce to medium heat, and simmer for about 10 minutes.

Prepare the Oxtail Stew

  1. Set the oven to 425 ℉ (218 ℃).
  2. In a large pot (see note), combine the tomato sauce with the cooked oxtail. Cover and cook on medium heat for 10 minutes.
  3. Remove the cover and add the okra to the pot. Cover the pot. Cook on medium heat for 20 minutes.
  4. Remove the lid of the pot and squeeze the lime. If the pot can be put in the oven directly, put it in the oven. Otherwise, transfer the stew to an oven-safe dish and put it in the oven. Cook until brown crust forms on top for about 30 to 45 minutes.


  • Use a stovetop pot that can be put in the oven, so it can go directly from the stovetop into the oven (like a Dutch oven).
  • This dish can be made spicy by adding a couple of hot peppers (when adding the okra).
  • The nutrition facts do not include rice.
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Egyptian


  • Serving Size: 2 cups
  • Calories: 397
  • Sugar: 14 g
  • Sodium: 257 mg
  • Fat: 18 g
  • Saturated Fat: 6 g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 12 g
  • Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 24 g
  • Fiber: 7 g
  • Protein: 33 g
  • Cholesterol: 100 mg

Keywords: Egyptian bamia, okra stew, Egyptian okra, Bamya recipe, Bamia recipe, how to make oxtail stew, how to cook oxtail stew, okra recipe

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