The Most Delicious Braised Short Ribs

the-most-delicious-braised-short-ribs

**This is a terrible picture. I’m sorry, but it was New Years and I was more into the champagne.

Guys, make these. For a dinner party would be my rec, because you do most of the work the day before and they are flat out succulent. And flavorful and rich. And go ridiculously well with things like Mac ‘n Cheese.

These work best made the night before; it allows you to refrigerate them and then skim off the excess fat the following day (there is usually a lot with short ribs). However, if you want to make them today my recommendation would be to make them slightly ahead of time, and allow them to cool so you can skim off some fat then. They will still be delicious!! Also the make ahead factor is so amazing when having people over for dinner- makes the last minute prep a breeze!

Recipe

  • 10-12 beef short ribs – I always ask for the least fatty ones
  • ~2 cups mirepoix (mix of finely chopped onion, carrot, and celery)
  • S&P
  • 1 bottle good red wine
  • ~ 6 cups beef broth
  • Worcestershire
  • Bay leaf
  • Thyme

Preheat the oven to 350.  Heat some olive oil over medium in a big dutch oven. Working in batches, brown the short ribs on all sides. Generously season with salt & pepper while cooking.  Transfer to a plate.  Pour out the excess fat, then add in the veggies, cooking for about 5-10 minutes until soft (add more oil if necessary). Deglaze the pan with the bottle of wine.  The wine flavor really does stand out in the end, so use a bottle that you would enjoy drinking.  Turn the heat up to high and let wine reduce by 3/4 – about 20 minutes. Add the meat back into the pan, then pour in enough beef broth to almost cover. Sprinkle in a bit of worcestershire, a bay leaf, and some fresh or dried thyme. If using low sodium beef broth, you’ll need to add more salt. Don’t under salt! That’s the fastest way to a flavorless dinner, IMO.  Bring the liquid to a boil, then cover and put in the oven for about 2.5 hours, until the meat is fork tender. Remove from the oven, remove as many veggies as you can with a slotted spoon (or just send all the sauce through a strainer – you don’t really want the veggies in the gravy for serving; they were just used for flavor), let the ribs cool in the liquid, and then refrigerate (in the covered pan) overnight.

The next day, a couple hours before you want to serve dinner, take the ribs out of the fridge. And here is the magical/super gross part of this recipe. ALL of the fat will have solidified on the top – and it is A LOT – making it very easy for you to take a spoon and scoop it all out. It is a very gross yet very satisfying process. I’ve made short ribs before without this refrigeration/fat removal step, and have been disappointed with the fattiness of the end result. This cuts out that problem completely, allowing you to really enjoy the flavor of the meat and sauce.  Ok, so remove all the fat, then place the pan back on the stove and bring sauce to a boil. Let sauce thicken up and reduce by a lot (about 3/4), until sort of thick and glaze-like, a little over an hour. Continue to spoon sauce over the meat as it reduces down. Serve these delicious guys over something equally delectable, like creamy mashed potatoes or mac ‘n cheese!

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