Friday, March 16, 2007

Braised Short Ribs With Root Vegetables

One of the great, stick-to-your-ribs, winter-weather treats is braised short ribs with root vegetables. It's so rich and satisfying. But now, it's getting springy outside and soon, we'll be dining on asparagus and strawberries, so now's the time to get all those hearty stews out of your system. I'm trying to think of when I can orchestrate a tamale assembly line to enjoy them before it gets too warm to steam huge batches of food in the kitchen. In the meantime, here's a great short rib dish. It's just a simple, one pot meal but oh so trendy! Impress your friends and neighbors with this one:

3 lbs short ribs
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 bottle of red wine
2 cups beef or chicken stock
1-14oz can of chopped tomatoes

mirepoix vegetables (all finely minced): 1 med onion, 1 lg carrot, 2 ribs celery, 3 cloves garlic

stew vegetables in large chunks: 3 med carrots, 1 lg fennel bulb, 2 med. potatoes, 2 sm turnips

herbs and spices: 1 tsp thyme, 1 tsp marjoram, 2 bay leaves, 1/4 tsp ground black pepper, salt to taste

In a heavy, cast-iron pot, heat the oil over medium-high then add the short ribs in one layer (no crowding the pan). Brown on all sides flipping every 2 minutes or so to get a good, medium brown color.* Remove the meat onto a platter, leaving the oil in the pot. Add the mirepoix of vegetables and sautee until they have sweat a lot of their moisture and begin to fry in the oil. At this point, return the meat and add the wine, stock, bay leaf and tomatoes. The level of liquid should just cover the meat, if not, add more wine or stock. Bring to a boil, then lower the flame so that the pot just simmers. Let simmer for 2 hours until the meat almost falls off the bone. Add all the chunky stew vegetables except the fennel 45 minutes before serving. Music to simmer root vegetables by: "Root" by The Deftones (on tour now and coming to a European capitol near you!) Add the fennel 20 minutes before serving along with the thyme and marjoram. The final product should be thicker than what you see in the photo. You should have tender meat and vegetables enrobed in a sauce thick as tomato sauce for pasta. If your meat and veggies are thoroughly cooked, remove them and boil the sauce down to the correct thickness, add salt to taste, and serve. Yum!


*This does NOT seal in juices or make the meat tenderer. Actually it does the opposite; you'll have to braise the meat longer than you would without the browning step to get it tender but I think it's worth it since it DOES create a lot of delicious, meaty flavor)

11 Comments:

Blogger Ms Adventures in Italy said...

I'll be a part of the assembly line if u make tamales...I'm a big luvah!!!

3:27 PM  
Blogger Hanna said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog. The bagna cuada was divine! I hope your spring flowers make it through okay.

4:01 PM  
Blogger Tracie B. said...

you absoutely HAVE to brown the meat. i never skip that step. what's better than fork-tender meat with a caramelized crust?

5:42 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

I'm sure you've read it, but if you haven't, check out All About Braising; it's chock full of recipes you'll want to make even when it's not winter. Short ribs are always a favorite around here . . .

10:44 PM  
Blogger Asha said...

OMG!! Looks mouthwatering! Yesterday was so miserable here, I could use some of those.Thanks Susan:))
Got Garlic Naan at FH!

12:55 PM  
Blogger Lotus Reads said...

Ohhh, my, this does look good, Susan, I will have to make it for the family one of these cold March nights. Thank you for the recipe!

3:19 PM  
Blogger Susan in Italy said...

Hi Ms., I'll let you know about tamale-making when I get around to it!

Hi Hanna, I'm glad. So far there's been no big freeze here, thankfully.

Hi Christina, Thanks, I'll check it out.

Hi Asha, Thanks!

Hi Lotus, Yeah, you have quite a few weeks of chilly weather ahead, don't you. Re: your last comment, no need to apologize! I know you're on blogging hiatus. Are you going pro with the reading? Have you gotten a contract with a publisher?

7:02 PM  
Blogger sognatrice said...

Yum! Something even my picky Calabrian OH would enjoy :)

7:43 PM  
Blogger Stelle In Italia said...

ooh tamale assembly lines! yay! i also am trying to get winter food out of my system as the weather gets warmer. this week it might actually drop down to colder temps, so i'm gonna make veggie soup :). can't wait!

8:45 AM  
Blogger Susan in Italy said...

Hi Sognatrice, Thanks for stopping by! What's an OH? Gabriel thinks it's Old Husband. Right?

Hi Jackie (or) Corrie, Yeah we got the warning that tomorrow (Monday) is going to be extra chilly. Soup sounds like a great idea.

3:51 PM  
Blogger ML said...

Yum!!! This sort of stuff is right up my alley! Thanks for the great recipe. I'll be making this soon before the weather gets too warm.

9:45 PM  

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