Beef Short Ribs



I can't remember exactly where I had my first taste of beef short ribs. A restaurant?  Someone's house?  I do know they were served over cheesy polenta and together they did this little dance in my mouth (I think it was a rumba).  Anyway,  the meat was so tender and overall was a very good food memory. 

Fast-forward in time, I now love making short ribs at home.  The process is so easy and your reward is a very flavorful dinner everyone loves.  However, I never cook short ribs and serve them right away.  I usually make them in the morning or put them away until the next day.  I like to let the fat settle at the top and remove it before serving. This type of dish always tastes better after the flavors meld.

If you've never heard of beef short ribs, the best cuts come from the lower (ventral) section, between the 6th and 10th rib, often called the short plate.  The short plate is what gives them their name (not the fact that they are short).  The meat itself is on top of the bone, about 1-2" in height.  Make sure to select a package with meaty hunks as lots of times they are packaged with more hidden fatty pieces inside. 

This recipe pairs wonderfully with our Pinot Noir.  It's one of those magical food pairings that exists when you drink a wine with good acidity and enjoy it with a good cut of meat (that is higher in fat).  Acid cuts fat and the magic is in your mouth.  Just try it.  Now, this recipe also requires a full bottle of wine in the cooking process.  I would normally suggest Pinot Noir as the wine to use, but you might be hard-pressed to find a decent bottle of Pinot Noir in the $10-$15 range that is acceptable for drinking and cooking.  Remember, if doesn't taste great in your glass, it won't do anything good to your food.  You will be able to find decent Cabernet Sauvignon or Zinfandel in that price range and I suggest using one of those.

This will become one your staple autumn meals...start perfecting it now!


Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven (at least 7 quarts) and add the onion, carrots, celery and fennel, cooking over medium to low heat for 20 minutes; stir occasionally.  Add the garlic, cooking for one minute more.  Pour wine over the vegetables, bring to a boil and cook over high heat for at least 10 minutes, or until reduced by half.  Add 1 Tablespoon Kosher salt and 1 teaspoon ground black pepper.  Tie the rosemary and thyme together with kitchen twine or add them to these little bouquet garni bags I use for my herbs and add to the pot.


While the vegetables are cooking, place the short ribs on a sheet pan and season them well with salt and pepper.  Preheat the oven to 400o F and roast them for 15 minutes.  Reduce oven temperature to 300o F.  Place the roasted ribs on top of the vegetables in the Dutch oven.


Add beef stock and brown sugar, stirring slightly at the top to mix in brown sugar.  Cover the Dutch oven and bake for 2 hours or until the meat is extremely tender.


I served these over mashed potatoes but the ribs are also nice over polenta.

Beef Short Ribs

6-7 beef short ribs, (about 4.5 lbs), trimmed of fat
Kosher salt and black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
1 large onion
6 stalks of celery, large-dice
4 small carrots, peeled and large dice
1 fennel bulb, large dice, fronds and core removed
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 750-ml bottle of red wine
Fresh thyme sprigs
Fresh rosemary sprigs
6 cups beef stock
1 Tablespoon brown sugar

Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven (at least 7 quarts) and add the onion, carrots, celery and fennel, cooking over medium to low heat for 20 minutes; stir occasionally. Add the garlic, cooking for one minute more. Pour wine over the vegetables, bring to a boil and cook over high heat for at least 10 minutes, or until reduced by half. Add 1 Tablespoon Kosher salt and 1 teaspoon ground black pepper. Tie the rosemary and thyme together with kitchen twine or add them to these little bouquet garni bags I use for my herbs and add to the pot.

While the vegetables are cooking, place the short ribs on a sheet pan and season them well with salt and pepper. Preheat the oven to 400o F and roast them for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300o F. Place the roasted ribs on top of the vegetables in the Dutch oven.

Add beef stock and brown sugar, stirring slightly at the top to mix in brown sugar. Cover the Dutch oven and bake for 2 hours or until the meat is extremely tender.

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4 Comments

  1. Beef short ribs are, in my opinion, one of life’s great pleasures. And I agree that they are best after the flavors have had time to become comfortable with each other. To meld and mingle for a while and develop their very best flavors. I, too, like to let them rest and remove the accumulated fat before serving. Thanks for a delicious reminder of a recipe I haven’t take the time to cook for quite a while.

    Reply
  2. I love short ribs and they are a Sunday night dinner kind of a meal in my house. We do a very similar recipe, but I love that this one has brown sugar in it because I think it tastes good with a little sweetness. I very often cook the ribs a day ahead and the scrape some of the fat off the top and then put it back on the stovetop and it’s just as good as ever.

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  3. Mmm, makes my mouth water! Love beef! Thanks for this yummy recipie!

    Reply
  4. Elizabeth 4

    Made the short ribs for our Sunday dinner. They were divine! Can’t wait to go through the other recipes and find other favorites.

    Reply

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