This weekend, I'm making a Molly Stevens oxtail braise.
As with all braises, I will need to nicely brown the meat beforehand. The recipe says to place the oxtails in the broiler, turning them every few mintues "until they are a beautiful dark brown but not charred, about 25 minutes total."
Here's the problem: I have never, ever, ever used my broiler with success. I do not know whether this results from my own incompetence, a faulty appliance or some combination of the two. I can't imagine leaving meat in there for 25 minutes. Everything in my broiler seems to blacken after just 1 or 2 minutes. Perhaps it's because I've used a pan in the past, and the height of the pan lifts the food too close to the heat source; would it help if laid the meat directly on the broiler tray? That solution seems awfully messy.
Whatever the answer to these burning questions, I'd like to avoid the broiler altogether. Can I just use my trusty, sesasoned cast iron skillet on the stove (or even in the oven) at a very high heat to brown the oxtails? Would that result in an inferior or incomplete browning? Please advise....