Last week it was 65 and this week it was 25 and snowing. Go figure. We got about 5 inches of snow in 8 hours. Not too shabby. Since it was so cold, I wanted a hearty dish. Something that would warm the soul. So I chose to braise some short ribs. Fall off the bone succulent shredded meat. Not only does this dish warm the soul, it provides you with some amazing pan gravy for potatoes. You guys know me, I love potatoes.
The beef was truly fall of the bone amazing!
Braised Short Rib – (From Wolfgang Puck)
1 bottle of red wine
2 tbs vegetable oil
6 short ribs, trimmed, roughly 2lbs
1 tsp black peppercorns, crushed
Matzoh meal or saltines (crushed), for dredging
10 cloves garlic, peeled
8 large shallots, peeled, trimmed, rinsed, split, and dried
2 medium carrots, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1-inch lengths
2 stalks celery, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1-inch lengths
1 medium leek, white and light green parts only, coarsely chopped
6 sprigs Italian parsley
2 sprigs thyme
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 quarts unsalted beef stock
Freshly ground white pepper
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Reduce the wine. Pour the wine into a large saucepan set over medium heat. When the wine is heated, carefully set it aflame. Let the flames die out, then increase the heat so that the wine boils; allow it to boil until it cooks down by 1/2. Remove from the heat. (If you are unable to set the wine aflame, it is alright. Not all wine has enough alcohol in it to set aflame).
Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large casserole, large enough to hold 6 ribs, over medium-high heat. Season the ribs all over with salt and pepper. Dust the ribs with about 2 tablespoons of matzoh meal or saltines. When the oil is hot, brown the ribs on all sides. Roughtly 4 to 5 minutes on each side.
Transfer the browned ribs to a plate. Lower the heat to medium, and add the vegetables and herbs. Lightly Brown the vegetables. Roughly 5 to 7 minutes. When the vegetables are lightly cooked, stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute to blend.
Add the reduced wine, browned ribs, and beef stock to the pot. Bring to a boil and then cover the pot tightly. Place the pot in the oven to braise for about 2 1/2 hours, or until the ribs are tender enough to be easily pierced with a fork. Every hour or so, lift the lid and skim and discard whatever fat may have bubbled up to the surface. The fat will probably be transparent and reddish in color. You will know that you skimmed it off when you see the brown beef stock.
Remove the ribs from the pot with a pair of tongs. Then boil the pan liquid until it thickens and reduces to approximately 1 quart. Season with salt and pepper and pass through a strainer to remove the solids.
Pour the sauce over the meat any any sides that you may be serving with this fabulous dish.
The ultimate snowy day meal.