Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Daring Cooks Challenge: Braised Short Ribs with Grits

This challenge was a lot of fun and yielded wonderfully delicious results.  I used the hostesses (Carol) recipe for Red Wine-Braised Short Ribs.  I only made a few very small adjustments to the original recipe and chose give it a southern twist an serve it over grits instead of mashed potatoes, noodles, or polenta.  Here is her recipe with my adjustments added in.

Red Wine-Braised Short Ribs

Carol adapted this recipe from Ruhlman here:  And, I further adapted it here: 
Canola oil, for browning the ribs
All-purpose flour, for dredging
3 to 4 lbs. short ribs
1 large onion, diced
Kosher Salt, to taste
4 carrots, cut into bite-sized pieces
2 celery stalks, cut into 1 inch pieces
2 tablespoons tomato paste
3 cups beef broth
1 head of garlic, peeled and cut horizontally
2 bay leaves
1/3 cup honey
1 teaspoon cracked peppercorns
1 tablespoon butter
1 pound mushrooms, sliced 
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
1 tablespoon lemon zest, grated

1. In a heavy ovenproof pot, add enough oil to cover the bottom about ¼” .
2. Put some flour on a plate and dredge the short ribs  on all sides and shake off the excess.
3. When the oil is hot, add the ribs and brown on all sides – you may have to do this in batches so as not to crowd the pan and steam instead of sear. You want to form a nice crust on the beef meat. There is lots of flavor in this.
4. Remove the ribs/meat and drain on paper towel.
5. Preheat the oven to very low 250°F.
6. Drain off any remaining oil, and wipe pot clean.
7. Add a little canola oil to coat the bottom of the pot, add the onions and cook over medium heat until the onions have softened.
8. Add the carrots and celery . Salt to taste. Saute for 5 minutes or until they begin to brown around the edges.
9. Add tomato paste and stir around to heat through.
10. Place the ribs/meat in the pot – its ok if they go on top of each other now.
11. Add the broth.
12. Add the garlic, bay leaves, honey and peppercorns.
13. Bring to a simmer.
14. Cover pot with the lid ajar or vent open and cook in the prepared oven for 4 hrs. 

15. Remove the ribs and refrigerate until needed, 
16. Refrigerated the braising liquid.  When the fat has congealed on top, skim it off. (It was getting late, and I was planning to eat this for dinner, so I skimmed the fat off while it was still warm.  I am sure I didn't get as much off this way, but it definitely reduce the fat in the dish by a lot.  You could also use a fat skimmer or separator of this.
17. Sear mushrooms by placing them in a hot dry sauté or frying pan and cook for a minute or two each side, while pressing down with the spatula.
18. Place the ribs, mushrooms, and braising liquid back into the pot and heat through

19. For the Gremolata, stir together the parsley, garlic and lemon zest. 

20. Serve ribs with grits.  I cooked stone ground grits according to the package directions adding in 2 Tbsps. butter and 1/4 cup half and half about half way through the cooking time.
Source:  Carol from The Daring Cooks Challenge March 2012
Here are some photos of the process.  Hope you enjoy!

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Daring Cooks Challenge: Braised Short Ribs with Grits