September 19, 2018

What’s Cooking?

By Lucy McCullough

Wait, wait!

Before the final weeks of chilly weather pass, we must get in the braised short ribs. This is the ultimate comfort food. I love to put it together and place it in the wood cookstove to simmer for hours while I read or knit while tending the fire. When tending the stove is not possible, the regular oven works just fine.

I found the original recipe a few years ago by “The Pioneer Woman” and have made a few changes. This recipe is a winner whether made with beef short ribs or pork ribs. The beef short ribs and red wine create a bit bolder taste than the pork and white wine. I have also experimented with pork ribs and red wine with good results. Serve with creamy polenta or rice.

Braised Short Ribs (Serves 4)

8 whole beef short ribs (or country style pork ribs)

¼ cup flour

6 pieces of pancetta, diced

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium onion, diced

3 carrots, diced

2 shallots, peeled and finely minced

2 cups red or white wine

2 cups beef or chicken broth

2 sprigs thyme

2 sprigs rosemary

Add flour, salt and pepper to a gallon-sized baggie. Add a few ribs at a time, shaking to coat ribs. Set aside.

In a large Dutch oven, cook pancetta over medium heat until crispy and fat is rendered. Remove pancetta and set aside. To pancetta grease add olive oil to the pan and raise heat. Brown the ribs on all sides. Remove and set aside. Turn heat to medium and add the onions, carrots and shallots and cook for two minutes. Pour in wine and scrape bottom of pan. Bring to a boil and cook two minutes.

Add broth, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and black pepper. Add ribs and pancetta to the liquid (should be mostly covered with liquid – add more broth if needed). Add thyme and rosemary springs (whole) to the liquid.

Cover and place in preheated oven and cook 350 degrees for two hours, then reduce heat to 325 degrees and cook for an additional 30 to 45 minutes. Ribs should be fork-tender and falling off the bone. Remove pan from oven and let sit for at least 20 minutes. Just before serving, skim fat off the top.

“Let’s eat!”

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